BHC will deliver vital health services to some of its most vulnerable community housing residents after receiving a grant from Brisbane City Council’s Pathways out of Homelessness Grant Program.
The $157,184 grant delivered over three years will support Brisbane Housing Company’s Home & Health program which will enable a mobile health clinic to be provided at some of the organisation’s key housing sites.
BHC has partnered with not-for-profit community housing developer and provider Bric Housing to deliver the Home & Health program with the goal of reducing health disparities among vulnerable residents and in turn support them to sustain their tenancies.
BHC and Bric have a combined portfolio of 2,750 social and affordable homes.
Professional outreach medical services provider OneBridge has been engaged to deliver the Home & Health program.
BHC Chief Executive Officer Rebecca Oelkers said the grant would deliver health and wellbeing support to the doorstep of any residents facing barriers to accessing standard healthcare.
“Having adequate housing and equitable health care are fundamental human rights,’’ Ms Oelkers said.
“The provision of health and wellness support where people live will have a direct impact on sustaining the tenancies of our residents, particularly some of the more vulnerable households in our portfolio. It is BHC’s goal to help our residents remain in safe housing.
“The provision of accessible healthcare and support will make a big difference to the quality of life for many of our residents.
“BHC is proud to partner with Bric Housing and OneBridge who share our vision to create safe and healthy communities.’’
A registered nurse from One Bridge will manage the place-based clinics that will provide medical and associated health supports at the most at-risk BHC and Bric Housing properties.
The clinic’s services will include health and nutritional dietary advice, vaccination service, collaboration with drug and alcohol support, Indigenous healthcare, NDIS services and referrals to GPs, psychologists, and allied health professionals.
Jane West, CEO of Bric Housing, said the grant would enhance collaboration between housing providers and health workers.
“Early and effective support networks can have a crucial impact on the long-term health and wellbeing of the most disadvantaged community housing tenants to ensure they don’t slip into a spiral of homelessness,’’ Ms West said.
“We know that access to consistent and accessible services where people live leads to improved health and tenancy outcomes, so we fully support this initiative.’’
OneBridge’s CEO Sonia Martin said her organisation’s mission was to bridge the gap in healthcare and empower vulnerable communities.
“Our inclusive outreach service is committed to providing high quality and compassionate health care services resulting in more sustainable tenancies,’’ Ms Martin said.
“The One Bridge team specialises in delivering healthcare directly to residents of social housing and we understand complex medical and mental health needs.’’
BHC will provide an annual co-contribution to assist the program’s delivery with an opportunity for on-going support from the BHC Impact Fund.
The Impact Fund receives a minimum of $150,000 annually from BHC’s ‘profit for purpose’ real estate agency, Elevate Residential.
“BHC’s vision is to create vibrant, healthy communities,” Ms Oelkers said.
“We believe the Home & Health program support by the Brisbane City Council’s Grant will lead to improved health outcomes for our residents.
“It will assist our most vulnerable to live with dignity and hope.”
BHC recognises Brisbane City Council’s continued commitment to supporting the city’s marginalised residents through its Pathways out of Homelessness Grant Program.
In its 20-year history, BHC has provided more than 2,000 social and affordable homes for Queenslanders in need. It has set an ambitious target to grow its portfolio by a further 2,000 homes over the next five years.