According to Rob Seaton director of operations at Wesley Mission, a homeless man died on the streets of Darlinghurst and it cost taxpayers over $1,000,000 for him to die. It would have been cheaper and created higher community morale to rehabilitate and support this man.

Many of us believe that the reason people are homeless is because they are lazy, dependent on drugs and or alcohol but the truth is that is simply not the case.

The homeless people you see living on the streets represent just 7% of those in our community considered homeless. According to Mr Seaton 93% of homeless are labelled “hidden homeless”. These are people couch surfing, living in cars, tents, with family and friends or emergency accommodation.

Barry Liddle founder of Ozway Realty has created the community initiative “Agents Help Homeless” to encourage real estate agents and those servicing the real estate industry to generate awareness around this social and community issue.

Barry has since met with Amy Brown formally of PWC and now working as Deputy Secretary (Commercial and Economic Group) at NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet to discuss her whitepaper titled “A Place for Everyone” on the Homeless Crisis. It seems the NSW Government owns around 140,000 social houses in NSW and there are around 60,000 people on the waiting list for these homes. In the next 5 years 40,000 of the existing 140,000 homes are going to be deemed uninhabitable and the government doesn’t have budget to repair them. It’s likely these homes will be sold off to the private sector and reports show this has already commenced.

Affordable housing are homes that rent for between $200 and $450pw according to Mr Seaton. These homes are made up of studio and 1 bed accommodation and 2 to 3 bedroom housing to take care of families who qualify for government assistance.

Mr Liddle is committed to creating more awareness in this are and to align the interests of private investors, with property developers and real estate agents. His dream is to create the housing required for the “missing middle” in such a way that everybody wins.

If you would like to donate to the “Agents Help Homeless” community project which has partnered with Wesley Mission to manage the charitable donations and generate much needed awareness for this community issue.