Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation (Short Stays) are designed to provide safe, culturally appropriate and affordable short-term accommodation for Aboriginal people who travel to regional centres to access services, or for business, cultural or family reasons.
Short Stays provide important and welcoming accommodation options for Aboriginal guests who may otherwise have no accommodation during their visit and end up sleeping rough or staying with family members – potentially overcrowding housing and/or putting pressure on tenancies.
Short Stays also help to improve the wellbeing of Aboriginal people through family groups remaining together while travelling and increased access to essential services and supports and training, education and employment opportunities.
There are three existing Aboriginal Short Stays operating in regional Western Australia. Planning is underway by the Department of Communities to develop an additional three new Short Stays throughout the state.
"The Shire of Derby-West Kimberley is proud to support inclusive resources and cultural diversity in our community. The Derby Aboriginal Short Stay is valued in our community for providing our regional visitors with safe accommodation and welcoming spaces to meet with other local services, including health and welfare support. It is also valued for its participation in community events."
Chief Executive Officer
Shire of Derby-West Kimberley
Existing Short Stays
The Department (Communities) has established three Short Stays in the following WA regional centres that are operated by non-government service providers:
- Kalgoorlie Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation – opened in 2012 and is currently operated by the Australian Red Cross.
- Derby Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation – opened in 2014 and is currently operated by MercyCare.
- Broome Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation – opened in 2019 and is currently operated by MercyCare.
These existing Short Stays are in high demand and feedback has shown the positive impact they have had on the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal guests who use them.
"Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media are very appreciative of the Aboriginal Short Stays established in Broome and Derby. They have been ideal for our Remote Community Media Workers who travel to Broome for training workshops, especially in the dry season when accommodation is extremely scarce and expensive in Broome."
Proposed Short Stays
The State Government has committed a combined $77.3 million through the Department to develop a further three new Short Stays in WA – in Geraldton, Kununurra and Perth.
The Department is engaging with Aboriginal people, the community services sector, government agencies and a range of other stakeholders across the state to ensure each new Short Stay is culturally appropriate and responsive to the place it is located and the needs of Aboriginal people it will accommodate.