Sonam* and his children are right at the centre of South Australia’s rental crisis. Without support from you and ARA, they will be homeless within weeks.
Will you please send a gift urgently to support Sonam and his family?
Sonam’s financial situation is critical. His rent payments are weeks behind, and his landlord is threatening eviction. His bills have been left unpaid. And this is a familiar story at ARA right now.
South Australia’s rental crisis is deepening. We have so many people reaching out to us for support, in severe financial distress. They are unable to pay what they owe, distressed at the thought of homelessness, desperate for assistance from our case workers.
This is why ARA, and your support, is so very important.
More than 20 years ago, Sonam led a simple life on a farm, keeping cattle and tending crops. But political and religious persecution drove him from his home. For eight years, this quiet and humble man was imprisoned and tortured, simply for his beliefs.
After prison, he was forced to flee to a refugee camp, where he tried his best to live simply and recover from his mental and physical trauma. There he met his wife, Kiba* and had three children.
Even amid the hardships of the camp, some happiness returned to his life. Sonam and Kiba dreamed of a different life, far away from trauma and persecution life. They applied for a refugee visa to Australia, and they waited.
Then one day, Kiba was gone. She simply disappeared, with no word of warning. With his visa application still in place, Sonam knew he now had to try and make a new life for his children, alone. In 2016, after 15 years in the refugee camp, Sonam and the children finally arrived in Australia.
That was six years ago. The happiness Sonam hoped for is still out of reach.
For families like Sonam’s, you can help provide support through the ARA’s Emergency Support Service. Funds in this service mean intensive support with case worker hours, advocacy and emergency rent relief. We can go above and beyond, because the people we support do not have to tick boxes or justify their needs. It’s this more complex support, such as additional case worker hours, that makes the difference.
ARA’s Emergency Support Service also provides urgent and practical items, such as food, emergency accommodation, fuel vouchers and travel funds, blankets and bedding.
Sonam is determined to change his life.
Sonam wants to learn. He has tried so hard to be independent. He wants to be the best parent he can be, and build a safe, happy home for his children. He wants to take financial counselling, learn English and join a Learner Driver Program.
But without your support, this is not possible. First, he must be financially secure. He is weeks away from homelessness. Every emergency housing service is full. They will be at the bottom of any application list and forced out onto the street.
Sonam wants to rebuild his life, but he can’t do it alone. Will you please help?