6.30 am – 8:30 am (for 7:00 am start)
Wednesday 4th December 2019
Louise Miller Frost – Catherine House | December 2019
Our December breakfast event: Louise Miller-Frost, Catherine House. Changing the lives of SA’s homeless women.
At Breakfast at the Next Level, on Wednesday 4th December 2019, we will talk with chief executive of Catherine House, Louise Miller-Frost. Catherine House is making a real difference in the lives of South Australian women experiencing homelessness by providing accommodation and safety, along with opportunities to recover and take steps towards a brighter future.
Catherine House, changing lives. Providing 54 safe places for homeless women every night
with Louise Miller-Frost
Since 1988, Catherine House has housed and supported women aged 18 years and over who are affected by homelessness and unaccompanied by children. Each night, 54 women are given shelter in several locations. Over time, the programs and services at Catherine House aid women in recovering from the circumstances that resulted in a period of homelessness.
There is a waiting list of women in crisis looking for shelter, with many needing to escape a domestic or family violence situation. Around 30 per cent of women coming to Catherine House are aged 45 and over. The demographic of older women is a concerning area for Louise and the team at Catherine House.
“Women can become at risk of homelessness after the loss of a partner through divorce or death,” Louise said. Gender disadvantage in a financial sense plays a major role. The gender pay gap, much lower levels of superannuation, and a lack of financial skills add up to contributing to some women losing housing.
Louise emphasises that being homeless does not always refer to a person sleeping rough. Many of the women who take refuge at Catherine House have been living in cars, or have spent time couch-surfing with friends or family, or taking up house-sitting opportunities.
The culture of hope is essential to the success of the recovery-focussed education programs given at Catherine House. By developing confidence and teaching practical skills, including literacy, numeracy and job seeking capabilities, women are empowered to make good decisions for themselves and plan for a meaningful and purposeful future.
Louise also plays a major part in the Adelaide Zero Project, a collaboration of more than 40 partners including the inner-city homelessness organisations, the state government and Adelaide City Council to end street homelessness in Adelaide. The latest data from the group estimates that there are more than 100 people sleeping rough in the Adelaide CBD on any given night.
Prior to joining Catherine House in 2017, Louise worked across strategic, corporate and operational leadership in private, not-for-profit, state government and local government corporations, plus Federal government health and social services departments. She has worked in rural and metropolitan areas, in roles serving the sectors of Aboriginal communities, newly-arrived refugees, mental health, women’s health and safety, men’s health, homelessness, rehabilitation, youth, and ageing populations.
She is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
This breakfast event is not to be missed! Join us to learn from Louise Miller-Frost about how the work of Catherine House is supporting South Australian women experiencing homelessness to recover and find new living arrangements.
Stan Kontos is a speaker, coach, entrepreneur and author with a passion for developing human potential.