There is a hidden crisis in Ballarat and the community has been called on to help end it.
As the countdown begins until the city’s first shower bus opens its doors, the community is being urged to lend a hand and a few hours to help those living on the streets.
One Humanity Shower Bus committee member Constantine Osuchukwu said the aim was to have the bus run three times a week an hour before the Soup Bus opens, and is calling on volunteers to help man the space.
“That will require at least four volunteers each session, so we’re looking at 12 volunteers a week,” he said.
Mr Osuchukwu said the bus, which will be fitted with two showers and a barber, was part of a coordinated response to tackling the city’s homelessness crisis.
“Homelessness is a hidden crisis in our community… it belongs in the past, we need courage and the will to put it there,” he said.
“In a wealthy society like ours there is no reason why we can’t get there.
He said the space would become a place of dignity, where those struggling could come, tell their stories and find out more about where to get support.
“It’s to ensure those who are struggling are given a hand up, not a hand out,” he said.
“If one person is homeless in Ballarat we all are. If one person diminishes, we all diminish. If one person flourishes, we all flourish. Because we are humans.”
The bus has been stripped of its seats and is currently being fitted with flooring, due to be operational from September 15.
Committee member and build team leader Mike McCaw said while the team still had plenty of work to do they would be ready for its opening next month.
He said volunteer bus drivers and attendants are needed to help run the bus as scheduled.
It is hoped the bus will operate every Tuesday and Thursday evening and Saturday afternoon.
To volunteer email email@example.com The Halving Homelessness: Think Tank Ballarat forum will be held on August 18 at Housey Housey.
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