Catherine came into the Hope Street in Whittlesea program aged 18 and pregnant. She had been couch surfing with family and friends for a year as she was unable to live at her immediate family home due to ongoing conflict over Catherine’s substance use. She had been referred by a housing and support worker at Anglicare.
During her pregnancy, Catherine made a life-changing decision to stop using substances for the sake of her unborn baby’s health. Catherine began to feel healthier and happier and started to spend her time more productively and was able to begin regular and happier contact with her mother. Soon after the birth of her baby, Catherine commenced a part-time course in pathology as part of the employment, education and training component of her support plan.
Creating Connections Employment and Education Pathways (CCEEP) brokerage was used to purchase a computer and internet access for Catherine to assist with homework requirements. With her case manager, Catherine checked out three child care centres in the area and settled on one she thought would provide the best care for her four month old girl. Her mother is also assisting Catherine with child care needs so she can stay engaged in education. At this time Catherine also got an offer of public housing under the Recurring Homelessness category. She moved soon after and is now settling into the local area with the assistance of her case manager.
She is saving for a car and has been referred to a local family support service for ongoing case management until she decides she no longer requires assistance and can live independently with the support of her family and friends – which we suspect won’t be long.