What is the Lifehouse
The Lifehouse is a drop in centre for homeless women at the premises of the Right to Life Association in Bennett St, East Perth. Open from 10am-2pm on Wednesdays, the Lifehouse is a place where homeless women can find shelter, security, friendship, and the pastoral and spiritual support to find ‘fullness of life’. The Lifehouse also provides material assistance in the form of lunch and takeaway food and giving out ‘care packs’ with toiletries and other personal items.
The Lifehouse has a particular focus on supporting women who are homeless and pregnant.
Why does the Lifehouse exist?
Among the homeless population, women are especially vulnerable. They are at very high risk of experiencing verbal, physical and sexual abuse. The challenges of living on the street can be exacerbated by the fact that this is a very male-dominated environment. In the words of a woman who was homeless for approximately four years, ‘most of the services become men-oriented because there are so many men on the street’. Women (especially vulnerable women) often feel more comfortable to access assistance and ‘open up’ in a female-only environment.
Currently, there is only one other drop-in centre in the Perth city area, a place where anti-social behaviour is often exhibited. In addition, one Indigenous woman has shown distress at having to eat in mixed company, which is not done in her culture. There is a need for a women’s only space where women living on the street can feel safe and cared for, and which focuses on meeting their particular needs.
How can I be a part of the mission of the Lifehouse?
If you would like to volunteer at the Lifehouse (women only please!), please contact Steve Klomp on 0417 184 789 or Rebecca Kobayashi on 0432 980 608 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to donate to the work of the Lifehouse, please donate to the Right to Life Association of WA and indicate that this is for the Lifehouse.
If you would like to provide food, toiletries etc. for the Lifehouse, please contact Steve or Rebecca (details above).
Currently, we are most in need of:
- Basic pantry food for the kitchen (pasta, rice, canned goods, herbs/spices etc.)
- Socks and underwear
- Religious items to hand out
- Non-perishable ‘ready to eat’ food (e.g. muesli bars, jellied fruit, tuna snack packs)