February 17, 2020
Solo mums increasing part of homeless picture
A leading provider of services for the homeless says the opening of a new shelter for homeless women highlights the impact the crisis is having on wahine Māori.
Auckland City Mission’s Te Whare Hīnātore has 15 self-contained units where women will stay for up to three months getting wraparound support while permanent accommodation is found for them.
Hurimoana Dennis, the chair of Te Puea Memorial Marae in Mangere which has housed almost 500 whānau over the past four years, says the marae is seeing more solo mothers needing homes.
He says in dealing with them, the marae has come to realise dad is out there somewhere and will probably turn up again when the rest of the family are housed.
"Dad’s always hiding because is they're together they've got to declare this, they've got to do this and it probably sucks up a lot of time and money for agencies trying to work out if these guys are in a relationship or not but in the meantime they've got mokopuna in the middle there who just want mum and dad together," Mr Dennis says.
He'd like to see programmes that encourage couples to stay together, and which deal with some of the anger, drug and alcohol issues that may have led to the family break up.
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