Housing Matters: capacity building and housing & homelessness sector news.
We will be closed from 25th December and reopening on the 4th January. We look forward to working with you in 2016.

Edition 14 - December 2015
From the Executive Director
Let me begin by thanking our members, the board of management and the fantastic team at Q Shelter for everyone’s commitment to the housing assistance system throughout 2015. 

Now as Christmas draws near and a new year is upon us, it is time to reflect on our accomplishments and what we would like to see in the forthcoming year. At Q Shelter the list of achievements is long and I am very proud to have joined this dedicated and capable team this year.

Snapshot of Q Shelter in 2015
We have established House Keys- benchmarking tools for community housing providers in partnership with the NSW Federation of Housing. Re-established our formal relationships with the regional Housing and Homeless networks and facilitated bringing them together to discuss the way we can assist them next year. Our Annual Conference was held in February and saw Q Shelter bring the conference to a regional centre. There were over 280 conference attendees and responses to holding the conference in a regional site was overwhelmingly positive, we are hoping to convene the 2016 conference in another regional centre. In 2015, Q Shelter hosted the Leadership Circle, which brought together emerging leaders from a number of industries to learn from each other about the balance between organisational and personal goals.

Q Shelter held numerous training and seminar series on topics directly relevant to the housing assistance system from NRSCH compliance, asset management to others indirectly topical but as is important, such as mental health awareness and cultural competence.

We have facilitated a number of important networks such as the asset manager’s network and have formed the Advisory and Product Reference Groups. We have continued with our essential contract work for the Department of Housing and Public Works in supporting community housing providers both, Indigenous an non-Indigenous, to gain registration under the National Regulatory framework.

We have expanded our communications team so we can reach out to the broader housing assistance sector to listen to their experiences and respond with the development of constructive resources and products. To this end, we have collated information on training needs so we can prepare a comprehensive training calendar for 2016. We have also developed and refined our ability to hold webinar training especially so people from regional areas are able to access training more readily.  Q Shelter hosted a webinar in partnership with Infoxchange to seek feedback from Queensland services on the Ask Izzy app developed to assist homeless people access services they need all from one app.  We will be embracing digital technology in 2016 and have nominated our own Ally Lynch to be an Advance Queensland Digital Community Champion.

Next year will be exciting and I look forward to increasing our activities and our ability to provide a voice for the housing assistance industry. Housing is a right and not a privilege. It is a basic fundamental human right, and we know access to safe, secure affordable housing increases one’s ability to gain employment, make community connections and engage in recovery.

For those of you who work in the industry and share this philosophy, thank you, your work can change the lives of many and makes a significant positive impact on Queensland’s triple bottom line.

I wish you all health and happiness for the Season. I look forward to working with you in 2016!

Leone Crayden
Executive Director
In this edition

Congratulations Hon. Michael (Mick) de Brenni, newly appointed Minister for Housing and Public Works

IDEP Update

Building Australia's Affordable Housing Industry Capacity 

In the regions


Latest Registrations 

Ask Izzy - The app we wish we didn't need


How to make a difference this Christmas

In The News

Congratulations Mick de Breni MP, newly appointed Minister for Housing and Public Works

We would like to congratulate Hon. Mick de Brenni MP on his new appointment as the Minister for Housing and Public Works. We are looking foward to working with the Minister and his team. We are all working to ensure every Queenslander has a place to call home. 


IDEP Update

The Industry Development and Engagement Project (IDEP) commenced in 2015 in response to the Department of Housing and Public Works’ (the department) commitment to building a stronger, more sustainable human services system in Queensland.  

Phase One saw the IDEP team engage with the housing assistance industry to determine industry priorities, form and execute development initiatives and identify opportunities to improve the way housing assistance is delivered across Queensland. 

This process involved in-depth consultation and engagement activities, to gather evidence-based information, on industry challenges that are recognised as preventing growth and development, especially around workforce, organisational and industry development.

The learnings and evidence gathered in this Phase will inform the development of an Industry Development Framework and Action Plan and support further development initiatives in Phase Two.  

On the 29th January 2016, the IDEP Reference Group will meet for a full day session, facilitated by a third party contractor, to devise the initial design of the Industry Development Framework and determine the action plan priorities for Phase Two (two-year period).  

The Industry Development Framework and Action Plan will be developed in collaboration with the IDEP Reference Group and the IDEP team throughout January and February 2016.  Phase Two is scheduled to commence at the beginning of 2016 for a two year period, in which the identified industry-led initiatives will target the diverse range of housing and homelessness providers across the industry.  These industry-led initiatives will assist to further develop the skills and capabilities of the Queensland housing assistance industry in order to meet the increasing demand for human services. 

The IDEP team look forward to continuing to support and work collaboratively with industry in 2016 to further develop the capacity to provide effective human services to vulnerable Queenslanders.  

For further information on the Industry Development and Engagement Project please contact the department on 3007 4473. 


Building Australia's Affordable Housing Industry Capacity 

Survey of Community Housing Providers

Community housing providers are invited to participate in a survey of affordable housing industry capacity. The survey is part of a research project, ‘Building Australia's affordable housing industry capacity’, led by Vivienne Milligan at UNSW. The research is in turn part of a wider Inquiry into Affordable Housing Industry Capacity commissioned by AHURI.
Thirty-three Queensland CHPs, from across NRSCH Tiers 1, 2 and 3, have been invited to participate. Invitations were sent in late November by email, and the survey will close by Christmas.
The survey will inform the Inquiry about the current capacity of the Australian affordable housing industry and help formulate questions for further in-depth discussions with industry stakeholders. 
The survey is designed to be completed by CHP CEOs or other senior managers, and focuses on:
•    The CHP’s organisation (including all subsidiary entities)
•    The CHP’s (recent) past and current capacity building activities
•    The CHP’s business growth plan
•    The CHP’s capacity building needs under two growth scenarios
•    Capacity building needs/priorities for the industry as a whole
•    Resourcing capacity building.
If any CHPs have questions about how to complete the survey, please contact Dr Edgar Liu (02 9385 4245,
The research team thanks CHPs that have completed the survey, and hopes the research will be useful to everybody associated with affordable housing.

Network News
In The Regions

In Rockhampton, the efforts to pull together a Homelessness and Housing Network Meeting bore fruit last week.  At this inaugural meeting of the network, Paul provided facilitation for a strategic planning exercise.

The Sunshine Coast network is going strong with a commitment to undertake strategic planning in the early months of the new year.

The Toowoomba Homelessness and Housing Coalition is celebrating the end of a very productive year.  They managed to get funding from the local council to build and maintain a shower block, toilet facility and laundry that is available to people who are homeless.  

Q Shelter also presented to the Wide Bay Burnett Regional Housing Forum held in Bundaberg and hosted by Regional Housing Ltd.

We heard from other presenters on a wide range of regional issues and solutions.There was a  very interesting presentation on Compulsive Acquiring and Saving formally called Hoarding and Squalor given by Monica Lord. 


New providers registered

Congratulations to those who received NRSCH registration in 2015. Since our last newsletter, a further 5 organisations have registered bringing the total to 40. Congratulations to the following recently registered providers:

YellowBridge QLD Ltd
Brisbane Youth Service Incorporated
Jacaranda Housing
Winnam Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islanders Corporation
YMCA Queensland

We look forward to continuing to work with those registering organisations and registered organisations in 2016.

For more information or support with NRSCH including advice on your preliminary assessment, please contact the Q Shelter team on (07) 3831 5900.
Ask Izzy - The App We Wish You Didn't Need

Introducing Ask Izzy: Watch now and have your Say

Q Shelter in partnership with Infoxchange recently ran a successful information session on Ask Izzy. We were pleased that approximately 50 participants who work with homeless people or those at risk of homelessness registered for the webinar.

Ask Izzy is a new website that helps connect homeless or at risk people to essential services. This resource can also be used by front-line workers assisting vulnerable people.

Click here to watch the webinar which introduces you to Ask Izzy and here to access the presentation slides.

How you can get involved

You have an opportunity to test the site and let infoxchange know if it meets the mark for you and your clients in Queensland.

You can:

Tool Box


Make a Difference this Christmas Season

In the lead up to Christmas, the Q Shelter office will be accepting donations that can help make a difference to someone who is experiencing homelessness or housing stress. We have reached out to Mission Australia and discovered that they are especially in need of men's hygiene products. Please call the office on (07) 3831 5900 for more information or drop by during our office hours to make a donation before COB December 23rd.   
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Copyright © 2015 Queensland Shelter Inc

PO Box 214, Spring Hill, Qld, 4004.
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