YWCA Win National Housing Award

PowerHousing Australia is the national peak industry body for the largest housing growth providers in Australia. The award, which saw YWCA triumph over nine other developments and organisations, recognises a project or program that “demonstrates industry leadership and/or genuine innovation.”  

The initiative that nabbed YWCA National Housing the coveted prize was the organisation’s “Lakehouse”- a “pop-up” housing facility in Melbourne’s south designed to give a home to some of Australia’s most vulnerable people- women over 55. Lakehouse, previously used as a residential aged care facility, is due for redevelopment. However- in the meantime YWCA and its partners have redeveloped and updated the property to provide a safe and comfortable home for 40 older women.

This cohort of women are often homeless due to a combination of gender inequality factors- diminished economic status, domestic violence, lack of superannuation, change in household formation and disrupted working careers.

The pop-up is the brainchild of property developer and advocate for housing affordability, Robert Pradolin.

 “Unfortunately older women are falling through the net and finding themselves homeless for the first time in their lives,” YWCA Director of National Housing, Jan Berriman said. “We’re thrilled that innovative projects like Lakehouse are being recognised as a solution to this growing and substantial issue."

Pictured: Louise Daniel, YWCA's Regional Manager for Victoria and Jan Berriman, YWCA Director of National Housing