Pop-up shelter for homeless women makes use of Sydney building awaiting demolition

With no end in sight to Australia’s homelessness crisis, one charity is taking an innovative approach to housing people in need — a pop-up shelter.

Uniting Care has repurposed one of its out-of-use aged care homes that is awaiting demolition into a temporary home for women aged 45 and over, who are making up a growing proportion of the homeless population.

Uniting’s director of property and housing, Simon Furness, said the inner-Sydney building would otherwise be lying vacant while awaiting demolition, planned for early next year.

“We’ve all seen pop-ups all over the place — pop-up bars, pop-up restaurants and clothes outlets and shoe outlets,” he said.

“Those are pop-ups for a commercial purpose, why not have pop-ups for a social purpose?”

Mr Furness said it did not take too much work to make 30 rooms in the building fit for use. They just needed a good clean and for the utilities to remain connected.

They were furnished using second-hand items from a major hotel chain that was having a cleanout.

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