Close to 200 Melton residents attended a BABBA show at WestWaters Hotel and Entertainment Complex on Saturday 20 October to raise funds for youth homeless service provider, Hope Street Youth and Family Services.
The evening event included a performance by the world’s leading ABBA tribute group BABBA, entertainment by well-known comedian Elliot Goblett, a three-course meal, a live auction and a silent auction. Funds raised will be used to purchase emergency accommodation and meals for young people and young families experiencing homelessness.
Hope Street’s First Response Youth Mobile Outreach Service, thanks to a significant grant from The Ian Potter Foundation, provides mobile emergency response support to homeless young people seven days per week from 10am to midnight.REFER UPDATE BELOW Launched in June 2018, it has already assisted over 91 young people with crisis accommodation, material aid and outreach support.
Donna Bennett, CEO of Hope Street Youth and Family Services, said the support from the Melton community was deeply encouraging. "It’s so encouraging to see this great show of community support for Hope Street and the young people we are assisting, and we are encouraged by the shared passion in this room for seeing the end of youth homelessness in the area," she said.
"The event was a great success, not only in helping us to raise much-needed funding for this critical service, but also in providing an opportunity for the local community to get together with their friends and family to provide young people and their children with a safe place for the night, a meal and the knowledge that their community is behind them," said Donna
During her keynote speech at the event, Donna thanked the Melton community for its great attendance at the event, and relayed the message that there is still much work to be done in Melton and Victoria if we are to see the end of youth homelessness. The rate of homelessness in Australia has increased 4.6 per cent over the last five years, with more than 24,000 people experiencing homelessness across our country, of which a quarter are young people aged between 12 and 24 years. The leading causes of youth homelessness are overcrowding in homes and domestic and family violence.
Venue WestWaters sponsored the event, with Kieren Carson, Manager of Melton, Raine & Horne real estate, donating his time to be the auctioneer for the night. 20 businesses donated items for the auction and door prizes.
To learn more about youth homelessness and young people's lived experiences of homelessness, please see I Am A Young Person.