WEEK OF FIVES: Haven Home, Safe’s Matt O’Connor, Michelle Hewett, Trevor Gibbs and Lisa Harris.

HAVEN Home, Safe has launched its national Homelessness Week 5x5x5x5 fundraiser to support the people doing it tough in the community.

Sunraysia people are being asked to run, walk or ride 5km, donate $5, and tag five friends on social media #HHSdo5, then sign a national petition to ask Government to fix five things for a housing system that works for everyone.

General manager – Mallee, Trevor Gibbs said: “We hope to raise $5000 across the Mallee, which will go towards accommodation, food, clothing and other essentials”.

“Taking part in this community fundraiser will also have a positive effect on people’s mental health and emotional wellbeing. It’s well documented that community involvement provides a sense of belonging and social connectedness. It can also offer extra meaning and purpose to everyday life especially during this COVID crisis,” he said.

Last financial year, Haven provided assistance, advice and support to more than 2000 people who were homeless or in housing crisis mainly due to financial hardship.

“We also housed 318 families and through our rough sleeper program in Swan Hill we helped 90 people off the streets, housing 24 permanently and reuniting 14 with families,” Mr Gibbs said.

“And our Private Rental Assistance Program provided financial assistance and advocacy for 413 people, including supporting 185 families into new rental tenancies.”

The theme for Homelessness Week #HW2020 is Everybody Needs a Home.