Families settle into their new homes before Christmas

There have been tears of happiness, and jumps for joy, as more than 50 singles, couples and families across the Northern Territory have settled into their newly allocated public housing in a bumper week.  This includes a series of newly constructed homes.

The team at Aboriginal Business Enterprise Tiwi Contractors has been working seven days a week over the last six weeks to make sure new homes in Wurrumiyanga were completed before Christmas – well ahead of schedule. The long days for the workers were made worthwhile, when they were on site to see the happy tenants receive the keys to their new homes this week after they finished work on nine one-bedroom homes and a duplex.

Alan Kerinaiua was among those to receive the keys to a new one-bedroom unit, and leapt into the arms of his tenancy officer at the excitement of a home of his own before Christmas.

The construction designs were a decision of the community, who opted for a series of one-bedroom, rather than three-bedroom homes.

These homes are among 15 allocated in the Arafura region this week alone.

A further 15 homes were allocated in the Greater Darwin region, including homes to three families from the current waitlist, and an ageing couple who could not afford rent in the private market.

In this case, Jack* has recently started undergoing chemotherapy treatment for cancer, and said it had been tough for him and his wife financially to rent privately due to his medical issues.

“This is a Christmas miracle,” Jack said.

Four homes were allocated this week in the Big Rivers region, including a three bedroom property to a family of six who had been living in an overcrowded home in a community, and have come off the public housing waitlist.

Through significant consultation with the respective local Housing Reference Groups, 13 families, and a single person have been allocated homes in the Arnhem region this week, addressing overcrowding and cultural concerns in the communities.

One pensioner, five single people and four families have been housed in Alice Springs this week.

Among those was a single mother of two who was at risk of homelessness, and a mother of six who has been busy moving herself and her excited family into their home today.

Further allocations are expected on Monday, ensuring public housing tenants have the wonderful gift of a new home before Christmas.

*not real name

Aalan Kerinaiua
Alan Kerinaiua was elated to receive the keys to his new one-bedroom home in Wurrumiyanga. He is pictured in the arms of tenancy officer Elle Hardwick.