Real stories

Courtney’s Story

Rough sleeping in Melbourne rose by 70% from 2014-1016.  Every one of those rough sleepers has a story.  Here Courtney, who has spent years cycling in and out of homelessness, tells us her story. 


Stories of Hidden Homelessness

The true scale of homelessness in Australia is hidden. People who sleep rough on the sleep represent only 5% of the homeless population while the rest sleep in crisis accommodation, in cars and on couches.





No-one chooses to become homeless

Lack of affordable housing and services and other issues including:

  • ill health
  • family violence
  • relationship breakdown
  • poverty
  • mental illness
  • drug and alcohol issues and
  • discrimination,

have created situations in which they lost their homes and, for a time, became homeless.

The stories and journeys of people who’ve experienced homelessness in Melbourne have been captured in music. In January 2015 the Dig Deep Collective, a young hip hop crew, worked with members of our PESP program and subsequently wrote and recorded a track inspired by their experiences. You can download the Dig Deep Collective track here.  

The following videos tell their stories in their own words.

Natalie‘s story

Trent’s story

Part 1

Part 2

Marco‘s Story

Part 1


Part 2

These stories demonstrate that anyone can become homeless, regardless of age, education, socio-economic or relationship status, gender, race or religion.

The aims of the videos are to dispel some of the myths surrounding homelessness, to create a better understanding of how people become homeless and to help find ways to end homelessness.

The videos were produced as part of the Equal Service: Homelessness Myths and Memories project, which ended in 2008. The project was a partnership of CHP Homelessness Advocacy Service and the Department of Justice and the Public Interest Law Clearing House (PILCH)  Homeless Persons’ Legal Clinic (HPLC).