Platform Nine, the crisis accommodation ministry of Kingsway Community Church in the Sutherland Shire, is searching for a new home. Last week, they were informed that their long-standing lease would not be renewed, leaving them 60 days to vacate their current space.
Operated by Kingsway Community Care, Platform Nine offers a range of short-term and crisis accommodation services for individuals and families who have survived domestic violence or been impacted by homelessness. Working in both the Georges River and Sutherland Shire regions, Platform Nine is one of the most effective crises care organisations in the area, supporting more than 1200 people since 2015.
The relocation will impact more than 20 families and the organisation’s offices.
“It’s our main site and our offices, so it brings about significant change moving forward,” said Brook Stewart, General Manager of Kingsway Community Care.
“We had a meeting with all our guests last Thursday and communicated that we’d been given notice, but also that we’re committed to helping them relocate either with us or help them find long-term housing solutions. We’re in the process of looking for a home for us, but also looking for more long-term accommodation for those that are currently staying with us.”
Brook noted that the potential for reopening trauma is part of the complexity for those impacted. “I’m encouraged by our team, and they’re certainly working with our partners to try and get the best solution for people. We want to be as trauma-informed as we can, so in a healthy way, we continue to support the guests we’ve got, and we don’t put them through more trauma than they’ve already been through.
“That’s why we’ve created supported accommodation, so people don’t feel like they’re isolated, and it’s not all on them, but we’re actually in this together and can find a solution together.”
In addition to the administrative and social repercussions, Platform Nine will be impacted by the financial cost of relocating. For this reason, they have launched a ‘GoFundMe’ appeal, aiming to raise $40,000 in 40 days.
“We’ve obviously got moving costs, there’s also some staffing costs that we need to cover in the relocation, and an initial lease we’ll have to pay. We’ll go through a change of use or council DA process as well, so there’s a whole bunch of costs to make it all happen.”
Despite the challenges, Brook’s hope remains firmly in God’s purposes as they work towards the future.
“We’re trying to pivot in such a way for what’s best for us in the long-term. We’ve got a couple of short-term solutions – some properties through partnerships – but long-term, there’s also another property that’s up for lease and sale in our local area that we’re looking at. It’s a bit out of our budget, but we talk about a ‘God kiss’ – praying God comes close, and we discover His provision through this whole plan.”
HOW YOU CAN SUPPORT PLATFORM NINE
Partner in prayer and petition for their ‘God kiss’.
Donate to their relocation Appeal HERE
Read more on Platform Nine and the appeal HERE
Read more stories of Fresh Hope HERE