What We Do
St Mary’s House of Welcome is a support centre for disadvantaged people experiencing homelessness, poverty and mental health issues. St Mary’s offers a variety of programs and activities for service users; but more than anything it is a place of welcome and refuge for those who need it.
St Mary’s opens its doors for information, advice and referral, emergency relief, showers and free meals for people in need.
Activities include indoor and outdoor recreational activities and classes, designed to reduce social isolation and encourage participation in community.
Some of the services available at St Mary’s are:
- daily meals, with table service by volunteers in the St Mary’s dining room
- free showers, towels and toiletries
- emergency relief (such as food hampers, clothing and accommodation assistance)
- activities to foster social inclusion, such as art, choir, fishing and outings; see the Activities calendar
- community gardening
- free monthly Optometry and hair cuts
- computer training and internet access
- Centrelink sets up a mobile office at St Mary’s once a week
- enrol to vote day and mobile polling booth hosting
- classes on food preparation and healthy eating
- pathways to employment programs (from time to time), and
- The Big Give – Christmas day celebrations open to all.
Last year, St Mary’s provided 63,430 meals or food hampers. Community workers also provided almost seven thousand interventions throughout the year. These interventions include support and counselling, emergency relief requests, information and referrals, financial advocacy and drug and alcohol support.
Call us or drop by for more information. For contact details and opening hours, go to Contact Us.
Why we do what we do
Doing our bit for those in need
The impact of St Mary’s work is significant for the people we help, who can be isolated, unwell or homeless (often all three). Through St Mary’s, service users become more connected, safer, healthier and more hopeful.
Providing a service for the community
Our work is also important for the whole of society. By better managing disadvantage and helping people with complex needs, we’re ensuring that a safety net exists for anyone who finds themselves in hard times.
We also provide an easily accessible pathway for members of the community to reach out and meaningfully help others.
How we do it and how you can help
St Mary’s House of Welcome is a community of people coming together to support those most in need. St Mary’s receives funding from a range of government sources, philanthropic grants and generals donations.
Our volunteers are truly the heart of St Mary’s. You will see them serving meals, organizing fundraising events, working at the front desk, weeding the garden and helping with activities and excursions.
We receive wonderful in-kind donations of clothing, food and toiletries.
Service users of St Mary’s also volunteer their time to the organisation, learning important skills along the way.
Last year volunteers provided St Mary’s with over 14,600 hours of time – which is equivalent to over $321,000 of support.
For every dollar that the Government has provided us in the past, we have been able to offer $3 of value to the community in terms of the volunteer hours contributed and the amount of money we have been able to raise through fundraising and philanthropy; not a bad return on investment, wouldn’t you think?
There are many ways you can help St Mary’s to provide a welcome place for those in need. Whether it be through volunteering your time, donating goods or money, or lending your voice to those whose voice can’t be heard, there’s a way for you to help.