Heartfelt House receives funding

Heartfelt House executive director Vicki Dobrunz.
Heartfelt House executive director Vicki Dobrunz.

ALSTONVILLE-BASED abuse support organisation Heartfelt House will be able to continue helping adult survivors of sexual abuse after the Federal Government chipped in $50,000.

The Northern Star reported early this month the organisation, which was one of only two in Australia named in the Federal Government’s child protection framework last year as able to help adult survivors of child sex abuse, was down to its last $12,000, and its waiting list had blown out to a year. It would be forced to close down its program within months without more money.

Heartfelt House executive officer Vicki Hamilton said at the time the group had gotten by on more than $70,000 from the Government last year, along with corporate sponsorship and community donations.

Ms Hamilton argued Heartfelt House needed recurrent funding from the Federal and/or State governments to provide the program continuously.

Page MP Janelle Saffin said efforts to find secure funding for the organisation were continuing.

However, in the meantime she had secured $50,000 from the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs.

“The $50,000 funding from FAHCSIA I’m announcing ... is immediate funding for Heartfelt House,” Ms Saffin said .

“In future I would like to see Heartfelt House get a more secure funding base, of say three years, which is something I would like to see for a lot of our local services.

“I am working closely with Northern Rivers Social Development Council’s CEO, Tony Davies, who is leading the charge on funding reform of this nature for essential community services.”

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