Addressing homelessness is a high priority for the city centre. At the last annual street count, there were 177 people sleeping rough within three kilometres of the Sky Tower.
One of the key initiatives aiming to end homelessness in Auckland is the Housing First programme, which was established in early 2017 as a two year pilot. Housing First works to end homelessness by getting people experiencing chronic homelessness into secure housing before addressing issues such as addiction and mental health. This model has been successful in other countries and in Hamilton, which was the first New Zealand city to initiate the programme. The Housing First collective has been contracted to house 572 chronically homeless people in Auckland, with funding in place to find housing for 60 people in the city centre.
Since March 2017, homes have been found for 221 adults and children.
What else is happening
Other initiatives in place for supporting homelessness in Auckland City include:
- Emergency housing is available near the city centre at James Liston Hostel, which is being renovated using City Centre Targeted Rate funding
- 80 new studio and one bedroom apartments will be available for the city's homeless with Auckland City Mission's redevelopment project, Mission HomeGround
- Homeless outreach services are provided by the Auckland City Mission under contract to Auckland Council
- A homeless action plan has been coordinated by Auckland Council, with Mayor Phil Goff committing to ongoing support towards ending homelessness through council’s draft 10 year plan, with a continued $500k per annum contribution.
- The Community Fridge at Griffiths gardens.
For more discussion about homelessness in Auckland and the Housing First model, watch the Auckland Conversation on Homelessness here, read an insight into the experience of rough sleeping in central Auckland here or watch the wonderful video below.
To achieve the goal of ending homeless in Auckland, more action including significant funding is needed. Ongoing funding for the Housing First programme needs to be secured, as well as the development of a national strategy for ending homelessness in New Zealand. There is also a role for business.
If you have any questions, concerns or ideas - talk to us
Please contact us if you’d like to discuss homelessness in Auckland's city centre.