Accommodating community need

Emergency housing project opens in Mansfield as legacy to Dick Hames' dream to help others

OFFICIAL LAUNCH: At the official launch of the St Vincent de Paul Society pilot project ‘The Hames Project’ last week were (from left) acting chief executive officer of VincentCare Glen Hodgkins, president of Northern Eastern Central Committee of St Vincent de Paul Society Carol Messer, board member of VincentCare Michael Liddy, deputy state president of St Vincent de Paul Society John Lazzari, chief executive officer of St Vincent de Paul Society Cam Battaglia and state president of St Vincent de Paul Society Tony Tome.

A PILOT project to provide emergency accommodation in Mansfield is up and running.

Carol Messer, president of the North Eastern Central Conference of St Vincent de Paul, outlined the project being coordinated by St Vincent de Paul and VincentCare Victoria to 60 people gathered at the Mansfield Bowls Club at last week’s launch.

“The Hames Project grew out of a long held dream of Dick Hames, the former St Vincent de Paul Society Wangaratta regional council president, to establish some form of emergency accommodation for people experiencing a crisis in housing availability,” Mrs Messer said.

Mr Hames was also president of the Mansfield Conference of St Vincent de Paul before falling ill last year and then passing on.

However, Mrs Messer said Mr Hames was accompanied in his dream by a local philanthropist who encouraged him to set out to establish a crisis accommodation facility in Mansfield.

She said the dream was supported by the North Eastern Central and State Councils of St Vincent de Paul.

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