New Carlton housing turns the focus to the over 50s

New Carlton housing turns the focus to the over 50s
Kaylah Joelle Baker

As part of the Victorian Government’s Big Housing Build program, new homes are set to be delivered to Carlton, with people over the age of 50 given first priority.

The $40 million development in Carlton North was announced on December 12 for the new year and is part of the state government’s plans to help those in need and aid in supporting Victoria’s recovery.

Given the severity of homelessness in the city, specialist housing and support agency, Wintringham, has started on the plans for Carlton Housing and is looking forward to seeing the space occupied this year.

Wintringham’s acting CEO Michael Deschepper noted the significance of “taking care of, supporting and advocating for [their] clients who have no-one else.”

“We’re beyond excited that our expertise in supporting older vulnerable people has been recognised by the government,” he said.

“It is particularly pleasing to see that the whole building will be specifically allocated to older people who are experiencing or vulnerable to homelessness, especially women and clients from the government’s Homelessness to a Home program, as well as people on the Victorian Housing Register waitlist.”

The 62-unit complex in Carlton is part of the government-funded $5.3 billion Big Housing Build that is aiming to deliver more than 12,000 homes across Victoria.

But what makes this building significant is that at least half of the new homes will be given to women over the age of 50.

“Low superannuation balances, disrupted careers and the gender pay gap all contribute to women over 55 being the fastest growing group of people experiencing homelessness,” Minister for Housing Richard Wynne said.


This investment will break that cycle by providing the safety, security and dignity of a home.


During the past year alone, more than 10,000 women in this age category were being supported by Victorian Specialist Homelessness Services.

With 40 per cent of these women stating domestic and family violence as their reason for seeking help.

To ensure resources are in close proximity for the residents, Support workers, community health, and allied health services will be made available close-at-hand for those residents who may need them.

A 24-hour concierge and on-site security will also aim to ensure safety remains first priority, and daily necessities such as public transport, shops and health and education services will be located nearby.

Acknowledging the importance of the new housing in Carlton, Mr Wynne believes the program is needed in Victoria – a state that has continued to be devastatingly impacted by the pandemic.

“Everyone deserves a roof over their head and the security of a place to call home. But for thousands of people, safe and affordable housing is still out of reach,” he said.

“We’re changing that with Australia’s biggest ever investment in public and community housing through our Big Housing Build and delivering new homes and thousands of jobs for Victorians at the same time.” •

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