Real stories

Courtney’s Story

Rough sleeping in Melbourne rose by 70% from 2014-2016.  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. This video was put together at a time when Melbourne City Council was considering a suite of bylaws that would give police new powers to move-on rough sleepers and featured in the #keepyourheart campaign. 


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.





Homelessness isn’t just rough sleeping



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 [youtube]OeZPLjMty-U [/youtube]

Part 2 [youtube]rJ9CWd-SUn8[/youtube]

Marco’s Story

Part 1 [youtube]Qb_VzHoBZvE[/youtube]  

Part 2 [youtube]O0EB4SlE71A[/youtube]

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).