We’re open in Perth!

On March 6 we officially launched our Perth branch.  We have been overwhelmed by the support of the Perth people and our new Branch Manager, Zora Harvie, pulled an enthusiast team of volunteers together in record time. “We’ve had supporters asking us  for several years when we’re coming to Perth! We knew there was a…

Liberation through education

For many Australians education is something taken for granted but for people who experience disadvantage and social isolation attending university can seem like something from a fantasy novel. The good news is that through initiatives such as the Australian Catholic University’s Clemente Australia program that fantasy is becoming a reality. The Australian Catholic University (ACU)…

Ken Spillman and his fascination with India

March 6 saw the official opening of The Footpath Library’s Perth branch. Whilst that means we have been busy recruiting volunteers to make our library services a reality, we have also been recruiting two new ambassadors for Western Australia. What an absolute pleasure it is to welcome David Whish-Wilson and Ken Spillman to our team…

I Am Hank….. I am homeless!

There’s a fine line between having it all and having nothing. Founder Sarah Garnett and her partner, cinematographer Shane McLachlan, have produced a documentary about a man called Hank, who they met when he came to The Footpath Library’s original mobile site in Woolloomoolloo eight years ago. The aim of this personal tale is to…

Not so Random Acts of Kindness

International Book Giving Day is a volunteer initiative aimed at increasing children’s access to and enthusiasm for books. It is a sad fact of life that most children in developing countries do not own books and even in the wealthy countries such as the US, the UK and Australia, more than one third of children…

Children – The New Face of Homelessness

Children are emerging as the new face of homelessness in Australia. Children in homeless families are now the largest single group who seek support from the homeless service system. In 2009-10, the homeless service system supported more than 84,000 children plus an additional 23,000 young people aged 18 or under who approached a service without…

Courage Seizes the Imagination

To celebrate our tenth anniversary, The Footpath Library ran a national poetry competition for school-aged students on the theme of courage. Students could write traditional verse, create a visual or graphic representation of a poem or performance poetry such as rap rhyme or song. The word was picked up via writers’ centres, the library network,…

Peter FitzSimons, Tim Farriss (INXS) help with our new CSA’s

The Footpath Library (TFL) has hit the airways with a series of Community Service Announcements kindly recorded by our patron Peter FitzSimons, long time supporter Tim Farriss (INXS), Melbourne author ambassador Kate Holden, regular client Barry, and Founder Sarah Garnett. In a heartfelt series the recording team revealed their personal connection and experience with The…

The Hidden Homeless

Often when we think of homeless people we can’t help but to conjure images of a men with mental health and/or substance abuse issues seeking shelter under bridges, in backstreets, empty buildings and car parks. Although this is true for some people, just six per cent out of the 105,000 people in Australia that experience…