Food and Housing

What is the End Street Sleeping in Illawarra Collaboration?  

The End Street Sleeping in Illawarra Collaboration is a group of local community organisations and government organisations working with the End Street Sleeping Collaboration to ensure no one should have to sleep rough in Illawarra.

Over the past three years Illawarra has seen a steady increase in the number of people sleeping rough. These numbers have increased from 11 in 2020 to 57 in 2022.

We believe street sleeping is solvable and everyone has the right to access safe and sustainable housing.  Finding the right information about who is sleeping rough and why is vital to developing effective strategies.  

In Illawarra this information will be collected during Connections Week (5th September in Wollongong /12th September in Kiama/Shoalhaven).

Their stories will be entered into our By-Name-List database enabling local services to triage the most vulnerable and collaborate across organisations to providing housing solutions and continued support services to ensure ongoing tenancy.

The goal of the End Street Sleeping in Illawarra Collaboration is to halve street sleeping in Illawarra by 2025 and end it by 2030.  Our work aligns with the Premier’s Priority commitment to halve rough sleeping by 2025*

Who is part of the End Street Sleeping in Illawarra Collaboration?  

The following organisations are supporting the Collaboration: 

  • DCJ                                        
  • Wollongong Homeless Hub
  • Neami National                
  • St Vincent de Paul
  • NSW Health                       
  • Illawarra Aboriginal Corporation (IAC)
  • Age Matters      

What is Connections Week?   

During Connections Week, trained volunteers and community sector workers connect with people sleeping rough to conduct an internationally recognised survey and understand their housing and health needs. It is a week to focus on the stories and needs of people sleeping rough in our community.    

From the survey data and personal stories collected a database called the By-Name List (BNL) is created. This is a real-time database of all people experiencing homelessness in our community. The data collected helps to coordinate support services, inform policy innovation, and create systems change.   

Understanding this information enables the community to respond in real time.  

The BNL is based on the principle that every person sleeping rough has a story to tell and that we know them by name. A story that allows them to be assisted out of homelessness, a story that can help us understand what leads people into homelessness, a story that can help us identify strategies that can prevent homelessness.   

What information is being gathered and how?   

The information gathered from people sleeping rough uses a survey tool – the VI-SPDAT – which combines elements of the Vulnerability Index (VI) with the Service Prioritization Decision Assistance Tool (SPDAT).    

The VI-SPDAT examines factors of current vulnerability and future housing stability. It is considered by the Institute of Global Homelessness to be the world’s best practice collection tool.   

All participants will be required to sign a consent form and their private information will be strictly protected.  Participants will be able to decline participation altogether or may choose to decline responding to individual questions only.    

In accordance with Privacy Principles an individual may request to have their information removed at any time.   

How will the information be used?

The End Street Sleeping Collaboration is an independent, sectorled and run entity and will hold the BNL and its data on behalf of local services. The BNL will be used in two ways: to immediately help individuals and to help change systems.    

Organisations can use the collective, de-identified data to advocate for the change and resources needed to end homelessness in our community.   

The information collected will be used as evidence to support policy and systems changes to better help those who sleep rough, and to reduce the number of people sleeping rough in the future.   

Further information:                                     

End Street Sleeping Collaboration, Graham West – CEO                                                       

Phone: 0419 330 029, Email:       

End Street Sleeping in Illawarra Collaboration, Mandy Booker – CEO Wollongong Homeless HUB

Phone:  02 4228 0955, Email:

End Street Sleeping Collaboration, Katie Feeney – Community Impact Manager


Media enquiries:

End Street Sleeping Collaboration, Jonathan Melrose-Rae

Phone: 0447 847 886, Email:

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