Woodgrove Shopping Centre, Hope Street's tremendous corporate partner in Melton, has continued to show their inspirational support of young people and young families who experience homelessness with their latest project: Stories of Hope.
This special project involves videos of Hope Street's young people sharing their experience of being homeless and about the assistance they received from Hope Street. Together with the Sign of Hope installation at the shopping centre, these stories of hope featured on Woodgrove Shopping Centre's website highlight the strengths of young people.
Nicholas has experienced homelessness twice in his youth. After leaving the family home at age 16 due to abuse, he couch-surfed from friend to friend before getting work as an apprentice carpenter. But the work didn’t last long – Nicholas’ boss was underpaying him and after Nicholas was badly injured on the job, he was unable to continue working. This resulted in him becoming homeless again. With the help of Hope Street, Nicholas was soon able to enter the housing market and get back on his feet. Nicholas is currently studying and working, with aspirations to one day run his own business where he can offer employment to those experiencing homelessness.
Maria came to Hope Street after experiencing issues within the family home. As a single mum, she is driven to establish a safe life for herself and her daughter. Maria entered Hope Street’s Transitional Housing Management program, where she found a stable home and learned valuable life skills, such as cooking and cleaning. As a deaf person, Maria understands the challenges of growing up deaf. It’s now her goal to work with and mentor young deaf children and she is currently studying childcare to reach her goal. Maria encourages others facing tough situations to never give up: "Just keep going, that’s what life’s all about."
These projects are about reviving hope, and raising awareness, understanding and compassion within the wider community about young people and young families who experience homelessness. They also highlight the expert services of Hope Street in supporting vulnerable young people in their local community.
Hope Street is grateful to Woodgrove Shopping Centre, which has nominated Hope Street as its charity of choice since 2015, for this outstanding Stories of Hope promotional campaign. We also acknowledge the Hope Street team members from Melton whose behind-the-scenes work help to make these types of projects a success. We are extremely grateful to the courageous young people who have shared their story - highlighting the importance of hope and utilising their strengths in making a difference with their life.