HoMie non-profit retail store Homelessness of Melbourne Incorporated Enterprise helps homeless youth by giving them jobs

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About 550,000 young people under the age of 24 in the United States experienced a homelessness episode lasting more than a week last year. They need stable housing, supportive relationships and access to services to find the path to long-term success.

A small retail store in Melbourne, Australia, believes employment is also a piece of the puzzle, and has created an eight-month internship to teach retail skills and people-to-people skills. roaming.

“Retail could play an important role in bringing these young people to work and creating opportunities. So that’s where we see this program working and working. And where it can have a big impact, ”says Marcus Crook, co-founder of HoMie.

Homelessness of Melbourne Incorporated Enterprise, or HoMie, designs and sells street wear, hoodies, T-shirts, sweaters and uses 100% of its profits to fund its Pathway Alliance program and in partnership with other organizations local, recruits young people affected by homelessness for internships in detail.

“Work with us for eight months, we’ll pay you. We will provide you with full support and establish real career paths for you. And so I think the difference is it’s deep and meaningful. results, ”says Ellen Jacobsen, Head of Social Impact.

Part of their recruiting efforts are focused on VIP days for any youth affected by homelessness who can come to their store to shop for free. Jacobsen explains why this is so important to the program.

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“Anyone can buy five free items of HoMie clothing, and we’ve got hairstyles, food and music, and we hang out and log in. And I hope the young people who enter the VIP days will apply. also for the internship, ”Jacobsen mentioned.

HoMie’s Pathway Alliance program places young people in stores across Melbourne, not just their own store, based on the skills participants already have, or their interests and location. Everything is funded by the community who do their shopping with them.

“It’s a really big part of it, it’s not just us doing the work. It’s the entire community of Melbourne and Australia and everyone who shops with us is helping support this program, so it’s really special, ”says Crook.

“It was amazing working with these other retail brands because they were so integrated into our approach to working with young people. And they came to train with us,” Jacobsen added.

It is a small program, still in its infancy, but it is a solution to help young people change their life trajectory every year.

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