A consortium of top-tier consultants from the Australian property industry donated their time and expertise to help complete the redevelopment of Melbourne City Mission’s Frontyard Youth Refuge.

Services worth more than $1.5 million were provided pro-bono by this top level consultant team comprising of representatives from Ashurst, Case Meallin, Slattery, Fender Katsalidis, Norman Disney Young, Built, Hendry Group, Equitable Access Solutions, Irwinconsult, Wood and Grieve Engineers and Urbis. Frontyard is Victoria’s largest youth homelessness service provider.

Homelessness, especially amongst the youth, is a serious problem in Australia. On any given night, one in 200 people remains homeless; with 38 percent of the affected population being under 25 years in age, it means over 44,000 young Australians sleep on the streets each night.

The property industry, through the Property Industry Foundation, rallied together to complete the $9 million redevelopment of Melbourne City Mission’s Frontyard Youth Refuge located at 19 King Street. Following the redevelopment, the Frontyard centre has been transformed into a four-storey building with two floors of new crisis accommodation and connected services, designed to disrupt the cycle of youth homelessness in Victoria. 

Chairman of Property Industry Foundation Victoria, Peter Inge says, “We’re proud that our industry has come together to partner with Melbourne City Mission and successfully design and deliver the redeveloped Frontyard facility, which will service the most severely marginalised and disadvantaged youth in our city. Our committed team of pro-bono consultants from some of the largest players in the industry have worked tirelessly to deliver this project on time and on budget.”

Vicki Sutton, chief executive officer at Melbourne City Mission says, “Only a fully-integrated service will effectively meet the needs of our most marginalised young people with complex needs who are currently falling through the cracks of siloed service systems.

“Without appropriate interventions, young people can become further entrenched in long-term homelessness and disadvantage. The pioneering Frontyard model aims to break this cycle by supporting young people to create a future where they can experience all the benefits of life we often take for granted,” Sutton added.

The Council has been supporting Frontyard Youth Services since 1990, says City of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp. Observing that homelessness was one of the biggest issues facing the city, she said the Council is providing support for young people experiencing homelessness by investing $480,000 in Melbourne City Mission and their new Frontyard Youth Service. 

In addition to the team of consultants who offered pro-bono services, the project also benefitted from the generosity of suppliers who donated materials to this project; they include Harvey Norman, Highbury Plumbing, Haydens Ceiling and Partitions, Signorino Tiles, Taubmans Paint, Apec, AMP and AGL Energy.

Image: Supplied