IT’S World Homeless Day today (October 10) and an unusual exhibition in Civic will open this evening to mark the occasion.
Well-known Canberra artist Caroline Ambrus, who has herself experienced homelessness, has joined with the Canberra City Uniting Church’s Early Morning Centre and Communities@Work to stage the exhibition, “Homelessness: We All Own It.”
The show includes 10 individual pastel drawings that Ambrus has donated to the Early Morning Centre and a handsome illustrated booklet telling the stories behind each of the drawings. Each drawing depicts the various crisis points of the homeless cycle, and aims to raise awareness of homelessness in the ACT.
The paintings are available for sale, with all proceeds going to the Early Morning Centre.
The entry “fee” will be a non-perishable food item, which will support guests at the centre, which proves thousands of breakfasts each year to people experiencing homelessness.
As well as raising awareness of the homeless in the ACT, the idea is to also to act as a run-in to the “Homeless Connect 2019” coming up at the Uniting Church’s Pilgrim House on October 17.
To promote the event further, from October 7-20 the St Vincent de Paul Society and The Salvation Army are decorating their opportunity store shop front windows on the theme of homelessness.
According to the event’s spokesperson, Michael Lindfield, there are about 1600 people who are homeless in the ACT and the demand for a safe, warm and welcoming place to sleep, particularly for street homeless men, has more than doubled during this year’s Canberra winter months compared to 2018.
“Being homeless doesn’t discriminate,” he says. “It can happen to anyone at anytime in their life, regardless of age, gender, language, ethnicity or cultural background, able or disabled, educational, social and job status, religion or belief values. Too often the homeless are ignored and suffer alone and that’s not right.”
“Homelessness – We All Own It”, Pilgrim House, 69 Northbourne Avenue, Civic, October 11-17. Official opening tonight, (October 10) 5.30pm-7pm, entry by registrations (for catering) at eventbrite.com.au