24 July 2018

A safe place for young women in Kalamunda

St. Emilie’s in Kalamunda is a place of refuge for young women who face obstacles resulting from substance abuse, mental illness, sexual abuse and domestic violence. 

In June, the Hon. Peter Tinley AM MLA, Minister for Housing, Veteran Issues and Youth revealed the facility’s new look, made possible with the help of over $4.2 million in Lotterywest grants.

St. Emilie’s provides safe and affordable residential accommodation options for young women in need. It also offers counselling and support, community outreach, life skills, vocational training, creative art therapy and an alternative education program.

The building is a former convent situated on a 2.6-hectare block with a small orchard, gardens and a creek. The renovations have made it possible to house up to 55 women at a time with 20 bedrooms, a modern kitchen, communal areas and counselling rooms.

“Each young woman who spends time here is looking for something new and better in life. It's not about where you've been, it's about where you want to go,” said Minister Peter Tinley.

St Emilie's is a partnership between the Department of Communities, the Esther Foundation and Community Housing Ltd.

Over the last 30 years, Lotterywest has supported community initiatives within the City of Kalamunda with 417 grants totalling almost $11 million. These grants include:

  • Over $1.75 million to Kanyana Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre, who care for wildlife, breed threatened species, conduct training and research, and provide education;
  • $195,000 to Darling Range Connect to go towards establishing the All We Need Is Right Here Project to build the capacity of neighbourhoods in the Shire of Kalamunda;
  • Since 1996, over $274,000 to Zig Zag Community Arts in support of the Zig Zag Arts Festival held at Stirk Park; and
  • $2.5 million to the City of Kalamunda towards the construction of the Kalamunda Community Learning Centre for the residents of Kalamunda and surrounds.

And the area is no stranger to prize winners too! In 2017, the City of Kalamunda produced two Division One winners who shared in takings worth over $1.8 million.

Did you know that every time you purchase a Lotto or Scratch’n’Win ticket you’re directly supporting your local community? In 2017-18 thanks to those that play Lotterywest games, $723 million was returned to the people of WA through prizes and grants.

Aerial view of the refurbished St Emilie's Convent. Image courtesy of Community Housing Ltd and WBS Homes. Aerial view of the refurbished St Emilie's Convent. Image courtesy of Community Housing Ltd and WBS Homes.