Five years ago, I found the strength to leave an abusive marriage of over 14 years. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. I was faced with parenting two daughters experiencing the trauma of separation and the impact of being raised in Domestic Violence. For 10 months following my separation, I continued attempting paying market rent, bills, food, clothing, car registration, internet bills, school fees, uniforms and activities for my girls. After 10 months, my poor mental health became so acute that I was scheduled for three weeks. Desperate, full of shame, suicidal and exhausted, I [couldn’t] what I’d been doing. I needed help. I needed supports to recover. I need secure, affordable housing. My beautiful daughters needed a stable, secure environment. In 2014 I began the process of applying for Social Housing (Priority, At Risk). I cannot emphasise how difficult
There’s over twenty (20) years’ documented history of female homelessness on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.
In the year leading up to the Shelter’s opening, Manly Community Centre and St Vincent de Paul in Brookvale recorded more than 300 women turning up on their doorstep in search of crisis accommodation. These statistics and years of experience fuelled the need for what began as Manly Women’s Shelter.