Homeless Task Cafs

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Action towards homelessness

Legal and social definition of social groups:
Homelessness is not just a lack of shelter it is also the lack of a safe and nurturing home environment; a private place where people feel comfortable and settled and where they feel they belong. Legal definition:

A person is homeless if he/she has inadequate access to safe/secure housing. Australian Bureau Statistics, person considered as having inadequate access to Safe/secure housing if only housing to which person has access: Damages, likely to damage persons health or threatens the person’s safety. Marginalises person through failing to provide access to own amenities/economic and social support home normally has places person in circumstances that threaten or majorly affect adequacy, security, safety, affordability of housing. Several categories of homelessness in Australian society. Primary: people who "sleep out", live on streets, in parks, deserted buildings, cars. Secondary/tertiary: move between various types of temporary shelters, homes of friends, relatives. Boarding houses on long term basis, shared amenities. Marginally housed: people who live close to minimum community standard of housing, couple renting caravan.., this category of homelessness does not strictly fit within the current definition of people who are homeless. Social Definition:

* Society considers person/does not have access to safe and permanent housing... * may live on streets
* refuges
* cars/caravans
* squats
* unaffordable
* private rental
* with friends
* Temporary locations.
Homelessness is seen as a lack of connectedness. Emotional needs are important components of wellbeing. One of them is to feel a sense of belonging. Being part of a family, community, housing contributes to this. The social definition varies....Cultural aspects of adequacy and acceptability are important and that homelessness is not a single state but changes over time and place. Homelessness is not just lack of housing, but also lack of access to social and economic opportunities. Within society some people have a perception that the homeless are a burden on society. People are slowly coming to turns that people are rarely homeless by choice. Something has usually occurred in their life that they could not manage. Concept of home- heart of the term "homelessness". Australian dream-own free-standing dwelling, yard, occupied by a single family. Indigenous- "home" not dwelling, but land from which comes and where ones ancestor lived, not just physical space, but experiences lived in this space.

Characteristics of the homeless:
The degree of homelessness can vary. Homelessness is divided into three different segments. Primary- Conventional accommodation: who are living on streets, deserted buildings, improvised dwellings, under bridges, parks etc. Secondary- Moving between various forms of temporary shelter, including dwellings of friends, emergency accommodation, youth refugees, hostels and boarding houses. Tertiary- People living in single rooms in private boarding houses, don’t have own bathroom, kitchen or security. The Australian Bureau of Statistics "Counting the Homeless report (2008) •104676 Australian homeless on census night in 2006, compared to 99900 in previous census. Increase of just under 5% No "typical” homeless person. Some may be living in poverty due to long or short term employment, debt, finnancial pressures, housing market pressures; rising rental, house prices, lack of public housing. Finnancial difficulty- personal or family problems; family breakdown, domestic violence, poor physical, mental health, substance abuse, other addictions. Homeless live without secure and safe housing, example: cars, caravans, tents, garages, friend’s houses, etc. Many do not have jobs, roles within the community or social supports, often alienated from society. Having never married, having little contact with family and friends. Social isolation...
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