News

Gaining independence and self-worth

St John of God Casa Venegas resident, Michael, successfully secured his own private rental accommodation after being a part of the Casa Venegas Program for seven months.

4 Jan 2021

Client and caregiver of St John of God Casa Venegas, a program which provides secure accommodation, support and advocacy for men and women living with a mental health condition who are homeless.

St John of God Casa Venegas, based in the inner west and south west of Sydney, provides secure accommodation, support and advocacy for men and women living with a mental health condition who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. 

The service supports people to start their recovery journey, gain confidence, find permanent accommodation and move towards an independent and fulfilling life in the community. 

During the 2019-20 financial year, the service supported 59 people with enduring mental health issues with 5,014 nights of stable accommodation. 

Michael, who has experienced anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder, worked towards moving into his own accommodation and is now enrolled in a music course at TAFE. 

“I would not have been able to enrol into a course or move into a private rental if I had not received the support from Casa Venegas,” Michael said. 

During his stay within the service, Michael regained his confidence to re-engage with his love of music and overcome his fear of public places, enjoying a coffee with friends at the local café and going to the movies. 

The Casa Venegas team supported Michael to continue with his mental health plan whilst working on his personal goals and aspirations for his future. 

“The Casa Venegas team have given me a roof over my head and provided constant support during a time of crisis,” he said. 

“The service has built my confidence, understood the challenges of my anxiety and worked with me to gain my independence. 

“It has been more helpful and beneficial to me than I ever could have ever imagined. 

“I feel like I am able to have a life worth living and feel a sense of self-worth.”

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