Quite a few members of the community have been asking after Alice (not her real name), a homeless lady in her 80s, who St John’s Care has recently been supporting.
A few weeks ago, Alice came into St John’s Care looking for food and assistance. She had been living in a house with a friend on the southside of Canberra for many years, but the house was in a state of disrepair.
The landlord then sold the house and Alice had to find alternative accommodation. She really struggled to find somewhere to live despite registering with various government organisations.
She ended up living in a tent for a few weeks during the summer. This became a problem, especially in the extreme heat of summer.
Alice also has a cat which is her most treasured possession. So she needed to find somewhere to stay that allows cats.
Alice lost, believed stolen, most of her forms of identity when she was living in the tent. This hindered her ability to get a house. She eventually managed to find short term accommodation in a low budget hotel but had to use the only savings she had to pay for it.
After a few months, Alice started to run out of money and that is when she approached SJC. She became very ill and was unable to access food.
We arranged for some food to be delivered to Alice at the hotel and, after a few weeks, she started to improve.
We contacted My Aged Care and registered Alice for an urgent assessment. This was completed and a case conference was organised for the relevant services to support her in the best possible way.
Alice has now been allocated a house and is moving in over the next few days. Unfortunately, as she has been homeless for the last 10 months, she has nothing but the clothes she packed into a small suitcase.
However, because of all the wonderful donations SJC receives, we have been able to give Alice a few of the household goods that she needs to move in.
Items required: Vegemite, tinned fruit, Up and Go.