Hope for the Homeless

Please join us in providing hope for the homeless 

In Australia, Easter marks the beginning of the colder and darker time of the year. It's a time when we often find ourselves thinking about what really matters to us and the many ways in which we’ve been blessed.

It’s also a time to think about how to share what we can with those less fortunate.

Approximately 22,000 Victorians are currently experiencing homelessness. They are sons, daughters, and often fathers and mothers, but on the streets they become virtually invisible. 

Every day they are faced with the insurmountable challenges of not knowing where their next meal or shelter might come from.  

We invite you to join us in extending a hand to those in need, to be their voice and their hope. 


This special time of year is also a chance for the St Vincent’s community to honour the rich legacy of the Sisters of Charity.  

In 1889, five Sisters of Charity arrived in Melbourne with the dream of establishing a hospital. Four years later, after working tirelessly to raise funds, the Sisters opened a small cottage hospital with 30 beds and treated almost 2,500 patients in the first year alone. Their mission was to create a health service that cared for people equally, to serve and care for people who are vulnerable or disadvantaged. 

We are proud to carry on the mission of the Sisters of Charity.

Sister of Charity, Sr Tierney serving food and drinks, which she sourced herself, for up to 100 men and 40 women in Potts Point, Sydney. The image was taken in 1934 during the Great Depression.

The mission and selfless work of the Sisters continues today through the dedicated staff at St Vincent’s. Not only through the noble work of the Healthcare for the Homeless team, but as a commitment of all staff at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne, keeping this legacy alive.  

Una McKeever, Healthcare for the Homeless Group Manager said, “What makes St Vincent’s special is that we aren’t afraid of the hard cases. Everyone is valued, no matter who they are and what their background is.” 

There are so many examples of staff rallying and going above and beyond to provide care for the most challenging and marginalised people in our community.  

A homeless man needed ongoing treatment for cancer. Despite having a history of mental health issues that made him challenging to engage with, the team refused to turn their backs on him. They created a strong circle of support for the teams who cared for him, including our amazing hospital security staff who put measures in place to ensure everyone including the client was feeling safe so he could finish his treatment. Was it easy? No. But the team’s commitment meant the man received the life-saving treatment he needed. 

St Vincent’s is proud to run several highly successful, nationally recognised innovative programs focused on caring for people experiencing homelessness. 

We need the support of our community of donors to continue these vital services.


Una McKeever with the Mobile Health and Outreach Service van.

The Cottage, in Fitzroy Street, Fitzroy.

Mobile Health Outreach Service

St Vincent’s ran a Mobile Health and Outreach Service to provide clinical care to those experiencing homelessness. The service first began in June 2021 to administer COVID vaccinations to people living on the streets. On 30 June 2023, the service had to be closed due to a lack of funding. Click here to learn more about this vital service.


Assessment, Liaison and Early Referral Team (ALERT)

ALERT provides care for Emergency Department (ED) patients with complex psychosocial and medical needs. After discharge, the ALERT team continue to help people access support such as medical, housing, and legal services in the community. 


The Cottage

This five-bed home, located opposite St Vincent’s Hospital is for people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness who have had an operation or have received treatment for a serious illness or accident. They can stay at the Cottage to recuperate and access Hospital in the Home services.


Prague House

This 45-bed specialised aged-care facility supports residents living with a mental health diagnosis and/or an acquired brain injury. Many residents have a history of homelessness or have been at high risk of becoming homeless.


Clarendon Homeless Outreach Psychiatric Service

This service provides acute assessment and case management for people with a mental illness who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

With your help we can continue to provide these essential programs to people in need. Please join us in providing hope for the homeless.



St Vincent's Foundation
Ground floor
Rear, 55 Victoria Parade
Fitzroy, Victoria 3065