KIDS under cover
Kids Under Cover was established in 1989 when founder Ken Morgan became aware of the huge gap in support provided to Victoria’s homeless young people. Back then the rate of homeless young Australian’s each night was around 11,000. Now, close to 20 years on, that rate has doubled.
Whilst Kids Under Cover have continued to grow and establish themselves as a driving force in the fight against youth homelessness, there remain significant barriers to reducing this alarming rate. According to the Youth Commission’s Australia’s Homeless Youth report in April 2008, the two main reasons for homelessness are a breakdown of interpersonal relationships and financial/housing problems due to the lack of adequate, affordable and secure housing. These issues intensify the need for Kids Under Cover services.
Kids Under Cover believe that every young person has the right to a safe and secure home and a sound education. They focus on preventing at risk young people from becoming homeless due to issues such as overcrowding, mental health, disability, single parent, drug and alcohol and housing affordability and where possible, keeping families together by raising funds to construct purpose built houses and demountable bungalows. As a result, the young people are given a safe, secure and stable environment to grow, nurturing them into a healthy adulthood.
Kids Under Cover works in collaboration with Community Service Organisations such as the Mirabel Foundation and Anglicare who identify the early signs of issues the family are confronting and where a bungalow will be the most effective solution when combined with the existing support. The bungalow program in particular has proven to be extremely beneficial, delivering 279% return on investment, an estimated $5.6m per annum in economic benefits to the Australian economy and providing positive social outcomes to the majority of the young people.
Another critical part of this journey to healthy adulthood is education. Kids Under Cover offers a scholarship program that provides educational fees and any resources required to ensure the young people achieve their potential. This aims to support young people to be independent, breaking any cycle of welfare.