Access Housing in Cahoots with tenants to support them through COVID-19

22 May 2020

Access Housing has recently partnered with Cahoots and their Cahoots Connects Essential Shopping and Delivery Service to further support some of our tenants who have been significantly impacted by, or have been identified as being most at risk of, COVID-19.

The Cahoots Connects Essential Shopping and Delivery Service sources and delivers groceries to individuals and families who are experiencing challenges accessing essentials, particularly during COVID-19 when pre-existing health conditions require people to stay at home and self-isolate or serious financial challenges have arisen.

Access Housing has, so far, worked to link 29 households in the Perth metro area with groceries via the Cahoots Connects Essential Shopping and Delivery Service, with the cost of groceries being covered by Access Housing through our COVID-19 Tenant Hardship Fund. (Cahoots Connects advises that it will also be able to make deliveries in Mandurah and Bunbury from Monday 25 May 2020 onwards.)

Tenants who are eligible for support via our COVID-19 Tenant Hardship Fund can receive a credit with Cahoots for one week’s worth of groceries for themselves and their household. Tenants can then create a personalised grocery order suited to their needs and have it delivered to their door safely and in accordance with government guidelines on physical distancing and hygiene.

Since its launch a few weeks ago, more than $5,000 of financial assistance has been granted to eligible Access Housing tenants via our COVID-19 Tenant Hardship Fund. The funds have been used to support tenants by facilitating access to essential goods and services and supporting them to stay connected with friends, family and the broader community.

Our Community Housing staff continue to reach out to tenants to identify their needs and priority areas of assistance. The team has, to date, completed more than 160 tenant hardship assessment surveys with some of our most COVID-19 at-risk tenants. Almost half of the tenants we have surveyed so far reported feeling lonely and isolated during this time and almost a quarter of tenants reported they are unable to afford and access food and essential goods and services. Through this survey process, our Tenant Support and Capacity Building team and Tenancy staff have been able to work together to address some of the diverse needs of our tenants during COVID-19.

Access Housing’s partnership with Cahoots is just one example of the company’s and our committed staff’s determination to assist tenants as best we can during the COVID-19 pandemic. Access Housing has also developed a comprehensive list of up to date services and resources across the Perth metro, Peel and South West regions that are able to assist people during COVID-19. This list is available on our website and is referenced by our Tenancy staff when in discussion with tenants about services in their communities that may also be able to assist them at this time. To date we have signposted and referred 35 tenants to services within their community to assist with emergency relief, gardening, cleaning and social support.

If you are an Access Housing tenant and you think you need assistance, please contact our Tenant Engagement and Capacity Building Officer Alex Kepes by calling 9430 0900 and she will talk with you about your situation and how Access Housing may be able to assist.