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The trauma of homelessness led Zoe to attempt suicide

Tragically, more than 44,000 young Australians are homeless1. These young people do not choose to be homeless; the reality is that they have simply run out of options.

Zoe’s story

We recently helped 17-year old Zoe*, who had been molested and raped by her stepdad for years. When Zoe finally plucked up the courage to tell her mum, she accused Zoe of lying and threw her out.

Zoe was frequently turned away from homeless services and spent her nights trawling through parks, squats and abandoned buildings, mingling in food-van queues to keep her hunger at bay. After months of despair and overwhelmed by a feeling of terrible hopelessness, Zoe tried to commit suicide.

Thankfully for Zoe, she was referred by the hospital’s mental health team to Mission Australia’s Roma House, which provides residential care and intensive, integrated support for homeless people, many of whom suffer from mental illness.

Our recovery workers at Roma House provided skilled care to Zoe, helping her to overcome the significant trauma she had suffered over many years. The team worked hard to promote her emotional and physical wellbeing, encouraging her to achieve her dreams and potential through her talent for painting.

Zoe is now thriving. She lives in affordable accommodation, but remains connected to our support networks as she finds her feet. For the first time in her life, Zoe feels optimistic about her future.

Please donate today to help young people like Zoe to build a brighter future.

Zoe, 17-years old

Our promise to you

Your donation will help us to support young people seeking assistance through homelessness services.

In 2015, Mission Australia helped more than 300,000 Australians, including more than 16,000 young people, to get back on their feet and move towards independence. We can’t transform their lives without the generous donations we receive from our supporters like you.


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How we use our funds More than 91% of Mission Australia’s income goes towards delivering services that support Australians in need. We appreciate every single donation we receive, and ensure that every dollar is well utilised.

Thank you.

Contact our Supporter Hotline
1800 88 88 68
* All names have been changed to protect the identities of the people we help.
1 ABS Census of Housing and Population, 2011.