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HousingPEOPLE June 2014

AHI HousingPEOPLE Newsletter
August 2014
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Australasian Housing Institute

The AHI Event Portal provides you with information about our workshops, seminars and events designed to promote and develop a skilled and professional sector.
Upcoming AHI Events:
Stock Transfer Professional Practice Seminar
Monday, 13 Oct 2014 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Adelaide - SA
Building Resilience Workshop
Monday, 20 Oct 2014 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Melbourne - VIC
Working with Complex and Demanding Clients Workshop
Monday, 20 Oct 2014 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Darwin - NT
Conflict Resolution Fundamentals Workshop
Tuesday, 21 Oct 2014 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Melbourne - VIC
Working with clients who have drug and/or alcohol dependency Workshop
Tuesday, 21 Oct 2014 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Darwin - NT
Asset Management Professional Practice Seminar
Wednesday, 29 Oct 2014 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Brisbane - QLD

Indigenous Housing Professional Practice Seminar
Tuesday, 18 Nov 2014 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Sydney - NSW


Professional Development Guide

Please, download the AHI's Professional Development Guide which contains a wide range of professional development opportunities, from traditional one-day workshops to more complex networking seminars and master classes.  

Issue: August 2014

Welcome to the August edition of the HousingPEOPLE newsletter. During the last winter weeks the AHI team enjoyed an opportunity to meet our members and friends in Christchurch, Sydney and Brisbane. Although quite different by structure (professional practice seminar, practitioner forum and networking breakfast) all three AHI events provided a useful platform for discussion of crucial and ongoing industry issues: disaster management, homelessness for older women and the upcoming Queensland  Procurement Transformation Program.  

Past Events

Business Continuity and Disaster Planning for Housing Providers Seminar

Christchurch’s transitional cathedral marked a poignant and uplifting venue for the powhiri at the start of this thought-provoking seminar on Monday 28 July 2014. During the seminar participants heard from New Zealanders and Australians faced with circumstances where there had been no time to plan, of having to throw away the plan and think on your feet, of staff supporting tenants while personally experiencing the disaster, of effective problem-solving and the limbo in which many people still find themselves. Speakers generously shared their experiences, their learning and their practical tips such as always having cash and paper copies of contact information.

Personal stories from tenants renting in the private sector marked a sombre end to the first day – their situations graphically illustrating the human context to the shortage and cost of rental properties in Christchurch. The city tour on the second day gave participants an insight into the everyday challenges faced by Christchurch residents with unscheduled road closures, potholes and bumpy roads everywhere we went. The quality of the Rangers Park temporary housing development wowed us all as did the explanation of a requirement for 15m deep foundations for new housing.

A remarkable two days: ones in which we all discovered like Lynda the “huge well of talent, much of it self-effacing, and the commitment to quietly get on and get things done, with no great self-promotion. Read the full article here
By Natalie Jameson, Programme Manager, Community Housing Aotearoa, Seminar participant
PictureA group of Christchurch tenants share experience of disaster from their point of view during the seminar discussion panel.
The AHI wishes to thank all speakers, sponsors and delegates for making this event a success.  
Silver Sponsors:

AHI Homeless Persons Week Practitioner forum

The AHI Homeless Persons Week Practitioner forum was held earlier this month as part of AHI’s ongoing partnership with Homelessness NSW with around 40 colleagues attending.  This year’s forum was focused on women & homelessness – with a particular lens on older women. 
The event was opened by one of the event’s sponsors, Lord Mayor of City of Sydney - Ms Clover Moore, who spoke to the recent challenges for the inner city women’s services, the impact of loss of their funding, and the City’s advocacy women who access these services. Representing the event’s other sponsor and partner, Homelessness NSW, Gary Moore (CEO) highlighted the statistical trends impacting across services, both national and in NSW.  He noted the increasing numbers of older people in general on welfare benefits, therefore, shut out of reach of any private rental accommodation options, especially if they are single. Felicity Reynolds (CEO, Mercy Foundation) reflected and highlighted recent research they commissioned, which extends on the growing understanding and evidence base for older women. And Manager, Kelly Hansen (Nova Women's Accommodation and Support) reflected on and highlighted a brokerage service model, funded through the Homeless Action Plan in regional NSW. The day was closed by a panel session, facilitated by Sue Cripps (CEO, SC Consulting), which enabled participants to ask the key speakers questions on their areas of expertise, share their experience, practice, and perspectives. 
The forum was a great success and sincere thanks go to event sponsors and also to the NSW Branch committee for their efforts to organise the event. All forum presentations are now available on-line.
By Lara Sabbadin, AHI NSW Branch Committee

Networking Breakfast with Neil Castles, Director-General, Department of Housing and Public Works Queensland

On Thursday 21st August AHI Queensland Branch Members made an early start to meet with Neil Castles, Director General, Department of Housing and Public Works. This breakfast networking event was a fantastic opportunity to find out about the Procurement Transformation Program and what it means for the Social Housing Industry.
Over 60 guests attended to hear Neil talk about what has been described as the most important reform being undertaken by the Queensland Government. Neil was on his feet for over an hour providing the packed audience with valuable insight into the Queensland Government Reform Program, and what the Procurement Transformation Program will mean for the Industry and for future funding. He also shared his views on how the Government will engage with ‘for profit’ and ‘not for profit’ agencies in the future as a ‘buyer’ of services, and what the future direction of collaboration will look like in order to deliver efficiencies.
With several questions and answers from the floor, a lengthy photo call by our sponsors, and plenty of opportunity for networking, the event was declared a great success by AHI's President Donald Proctor when he thanked Neil for his time and spoke about renewed recognition of the valuable role the AHI can play in Queensland during these reforms.
If you would like to play a part in increasing the membership of the Queensland Branch of the AHI please contact us and we will put you in touch with a very enthusiastic group who are looking to hold further valuable networking events in Brisbane and Regionally for our Queensland members and the wider housing sector.
Gold Sponsor:           Silver Sponsor:       Breakfast Sponsor:

Upcoming AHI Professional Practice Seminars

Stock Transfer Professional Practice Seminar, 13 October 2014, Adelaide

With transfers of social housing to community housing providers gathering momentum in Australia, this seminar provides timely opportunity to take stock of stock transfer process, past, present and future. The Adelaide seminar seeks to explore

  • where Australian stock transfer has been successful and where improvements could be made
  • forms and scale of stock transfer predicted across Australia
  • good practice principles of larger-scale stock transfer
  • stock transfer challenges and concerns – e.g. process issues, viability, asset management, impacts for tenants transferred.

Confirmed Speakers:

  • Professor Andrew Beer | Director. Ctre Housing Urban & Regional Plan | The University of Adelaide
  • Steve Bevington | Managing Director |Community Housing Limited Group
  • Jason Cubit | Chief Executive Officer | Horizon Housing Company Ltd | Horizon Housing Solutions Ltd
  • Tony Gilmour | CEO | Housing Action Network
  • Hal Pawson | Professor of Housing Research and Policy | City Futures Research Centre| Housing Policy and Practice | University of NSW 
  • Lyndall Robertshaw | Chief Corporate Service Officer |Compass Housing.
The full program will be available soon, however registrations are now open and a 25% Early Bird discount is available until 30 September 2014.
Seminar Silver Sponsors:

Asset Management, 29 October 2014, Brisbane

Two successful Asset Management Seminars were held in Sydney and Perth and following numerous requests from the industry we are excited to announce that the third Asset Management Seminar will be held in Brisbane on 29th October 2014. The full program will be available soon, however registrations are now open and a 25% Early Bird discount is available until 30 September 2014.
Gold Sponsor:                          Silver Sponsor:
Indigenous Housing, 18 November 2014, Sydney
This seminar aims to provide opportunity for social housing professionals to explore culturally specific service and management practices required to respond to the needs of Indigenous clients for sustainable housing outcomes. Registrations will be open soon!
The NSW Aboriginal Housing Office are involved in assisting to develop the program and contribute to sessions, and the AHI also welcomes interest from industry practitioners and Indigenous housing specialists and researchers to contribute to this seminar. To express interest as a speaker, please email Donella Roberts.

AHI Workshops

In October 2014 the AHI will run four traditional Service Delivery Workshops for Housing Professionals, in Melbourne and Darwin. These workshops are aimed at professionals whose work involves direct contact with clients. Traditionally AHI workshops are designed for people working in housing related areas, but professionals from other sectors such as homelessness, social workers and client service staff of other organisations will benefit from attending our workshops.


Building Resilience, Monday, 20 October 2014, Melbourne
Building Resilience is a one-day workshop designed to develop worker coping and sustainability. The participant will be able to understand the importance of resilience for sustainability. This will review models and strategies for coping with a complex and demanding client group in an uncertain social and political context. 
Conflict Resolution Fundamentals, Tuesday, 21 October 2014, Melbourne
This one-day workshop presents an enjoyable review of conflict and relevanttheories, as applied to individuals and also groups. Training will reviewsolutions, inclusive of communicative processes, the development of mutual goals, win-win situations via negotiation and the management of our ownanxieties in such situations.


Working with Complex and Demanding Clients, Monday, 20 October 2014, Darwin
Housing, community and health personnel work with clients who may experience serious mental health problems, substance abuse dependency, relationship conflict, family dysfunction and/or disordered personality. This one-day workshop aims to assist people in delivering quality client services to those whose situations are complex and whose behaviour is, at times, demanding and challenging. 
At times, housing and support staff work with clients who are experiencing substance abuse dependency. During this one-day workshop participants will explore the issues of working more effectively with clients who are experiencing substance abuse dependency. The aim is to share and then try out different approaches and ideas that may be of help. 

Housing Jobs

Social Housing Business Consultant, Northgate Public Services, Sydney CBD location 

Northgate Public Services is a fast growing public service business based in Australia, New Zealand, North America and the UK. We deliver services and solutions to public service organisations and work in partnership with our customers to add public value and improve the lives of people in the community. Owing to exciting new projects, we are expanding and seeking motivated and enthusiastic people to join our team in Australia. Ideally you will have experience in the not for profit, community housing or social housing sectors, providing advice, support and solutions to a variety of stakeholders. Read more

Industry Events


  • Housing affordability: owning a home on a low-incomeAHURI event, 28 August 2014, Adelaide. Explore the impact unemployment and underemployment has on the ability of people to pay rent or a mortgage.
  • IPWEA Asset Management for Buildings Workshops. September - November around Australia. 
  • The 8th National Homelessness Conference, 10 – 12 September 2014, Gold Coast. At this biennial conference front-line providers, academics, governments and agencies and those with a lived experience of homelessness will connect to identify the multiple and interwoven causes of homelessness, unpack the elements of successful programs, policies and practices, and seek ways these can be applied to prevent and end homelessness.
  • National Housing Conference 2015, 28 October 2015- 30 October 2015, Perth. The next National Housing Conference will be convened in Perth by AHURI in partnership with the Western Australia Department of Housing.
Australasian Housing Institute  
PO Box 6100 MAWSON ACT 2607
P +61 2 64947566    F +61 2 64947588
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