After five years in planning and construction, in May 2022 Launch Housing opened Viv’s Place, Australia’s first supportive housing initiative for women and their children who have experienced family violence. It is a 60-unit apartment complex in Dandenong providing safe and secure accommodation.
It was a very special event for Lord Mayor’s Charitable Foundation staff who attended the opening of Viv's Place knowing that the Foundation had been the very first funder for the project. The Foundation provided two grants totalling $900,000 over five years.
The Foundation’s staff were inspired by the incredible generosity of Mr Robin Friday and his family who donated $1.2 million to Launch Housing for Viv’s Place. The Foundation's Chief Executive Officer Dr Catherine Brown OAM said that Mr Friday's donation to Launch Housing was inspiring. "We encourage our donors and all people who make a windfall gain on the sale of an asset to support affordable housing projects in the community. The Foundation is happy to talk with you about current projects and of course donations are tax deductible."
Mr Robin Friday pictured with Foundation CEO
Dr Catherine Brown OAM at the opening of Viv's Place.
Senior Manager Homelessness & Affordable Housing Erin Dolan said, “This is an incredible moment for Launch Housing, and we are very excited to have been part of this important project. There have been so many wonderful people and other philanthropic funders who have contributed donations and grants to make sure this project became a reality.
“Viv’s Place is the first of its kind in Australia and will prevent the next generation of homelessness by keeping children with their families. It also provides stable and safe accommodation so that children can remain in the education system.”
The apartment complex has been designed to nurture a supportive and vibrant community. Residents have access to cultural and education activities, communal spaces such as a playground, courtyards and community gardens.
"This development will not only create a safe home, but a nurturing and welcoming community – every woman will improve their capacity to parent to keep their family together. Every child can aim to complete their schooling. Safe and secure housing creates the base in which families can begin to enjoy healthy, stable and productive lives, which supports families and communities to thrive.”