Manning Great Lakes Police District officers will once again support Mission Australia during Homelessness Week 2018.
In respect to this year’s theme “Ending homelessness together”, officers will donate second-hand police boots which will be collected by Mission Australia and distributed to those in need.
Many Area Commands and Districts across NSW are taking part to raise awareness of the issues people experiencing homelessness face every day.
NSW Police Force homelessness spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Max Mitchell APM said officers are proud to support needy members of the community.
“Homelessness week is a vital initiative for supporting those in need, shedding the stigma around the issue, and understanding that being homeless is not always a choice.
“The boots are still quality shoes and it’s great they can be put to good use again.
“The drive was a huge success last year with over 300 pairs collected across NSW, so we are pleased to be able to contribute again,” Assistant Commissioner Mitchell said.
Drop-off sites have been established at police stations where donations will be collected until the end of August.
Assistant Commissioner Mitchell added police work with government and non-government agencies to implement early support and prevention strategies for issues associated with homelessness.
“Our officers often have contact with vulnerable individuals, including those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.
“When working with vulnerable people, one of our most important roles is putting them in touch with service providers and other support networks.
“We also know it’s far more effective to offer assistance for families and children before they become homeless – so early intervention is key to providing initial support and preventing intergenerational homelessness,” Assistant Commissioner Mitchell said.
Mission Australia’s NSW state leader Dr Evelyne Tadros said the organisation is thankful for support.
“This boot drive is an important initiative that provides people experiencing homelessness with quality boots donated by their local police.
“While a pair of shoes won’t end homelessness, this is one way we can work together with NSW Police to provide some comfort and dignity to a person while Mission Australia and other services provide essential support.
“Each donation will go a long way in providing some comfort to the people that we help who are living in touch circumstances, particularly during these winter months,” Dr Tadros said.
Homelessness Week began on Monday, August 6 and will continue until Sunday, August 12.