Council recognised for homelessness outreach program

Monday, 24 June 2019

Inner West Council has won the Community Partnerships and Collaboration Local Government Excellence Award.

The Local Government Excellence Awards celebrate outstanding achievements and promote innovation and continuous improvement in local government.

The Community Partnerships and Collaboration Excellence award was for Council’s homelessness outreach program.

“I congratulate Council staff for winning this award and for the great work they are doing in combatting homelessness in the Inner West,” said Inner West Mayor Darcy Byrne.

“Homelessness is a significant and growing issue in the community and takes many forms including sleeping rough, couch surfing and staying in unstable or overcrowded accommodation,” Mayor Byrne said.

“We know the drivers of homelessness include a shortage of stable and affordable housing, family violence, long-term unemployment, family breakdown, mental illness and drug and alcohol abuse.

“That’s why this multi-agency work is so necessary and so successful – because they are taking a really layered, nuanced, multi-pronged approach,” Mayor Byrne said.

The outreach program is a collaboration between Inner West Council and a range of homelessness services and state government agencies.

These include Department of Family and Community Services (Housing), Sydney Local Health District, Newtown Neighbourhood Centre, Missionbeat, Wesley Mission, Youth Off The Streets, NEAMI Way to Home, Launchpad and The Exodus Foundation.

Initiatives of the outreach program include:

•Multi-agency outreach teams who walk the streets and parks of the Inner West, mostly around Ashfield and Newtown, and have helped dozens of people to move into their own home.

•An annual Homelessness Street Count. Council has coordinated the count annually since 2016. That year, 23 people were recorded. This year, 30 people were counted rough-sleeping, while an estimated 66 people were staying in temporary and crisis accommodation in the Inner West.

•The Newtopian Outreachers Project, part-funded by Inner West Council, which consists of 20 trained ‘Newtopians’ who providing housing and service-related information to rough sleepers

•Two videos ( that increase community awareness about homelessness, and encourage residents to contact Missionbeat if they observe anyone sleeping rough who requires assistance

For media enquiries, please contact Elizabeth Heath | Media and Communications Coordinator P: +61 2 9392 5334 | E:


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Page last updated: 25 Jun 2019