We’ve been so excited by the energy and vision of young Australians recently. Orange Sky Laundry (you might know them as the Young Australians of The Year 2016) and Homie Street Store are two projects making a real difference to people who are living on the street.
Clean clothes and a non-judgemental ear: these simple things can make a huge difference to people in a difficult situation.
The guys from Orange Sky were only 20 when they made their first mobile laundry van in 2014, hoping to wash clothes for homeless people for free, and have a chat while they waited. Now they have nine vans and counting, and it turns out they’re raising health standards, reducing the strain on resources and restoring dignity along the way. See how they do it and what the response has been so far:
Around the same time, another plan was brewing in Melbourne. Homie Street Store began as a way for three young friends to do something positive about homelessness. Their Melbourne shop focuses on improving the lives of people experiencing homelessness through: retail and employment training; VIP shopping days for the homeless, and for women who have experienced domestic violence, and; giving away an item of clothing for every item sold.
We love this idea! You can see how joyful the Big Issue vendors were on their VIP day below:
These two projects might not be solving homelessness, but they are restoring dignity through the power of clean clothes and human connection – small actions that can make a big difference in tough times.
Written by guest blogger Alinta.