HSY Family Hub

In 2005, Carmel Thomas, Elizabeth Byrne and Isabel Cid came together in a shared commitment to address the need for long term housing for people with enduring mental illness. They were soon joined by Rosalie Cotter, Christine Smedley and Dawn Kay. The key objective was to find suitable property in Melbourne to establish accommodation. The pursuit of a property came to the notice of St Joseph’s Catholic Parish of South Yarra, which  indicated its willingness to allow the site of a former convent of considerable value to be converted into self-contained units. Thus, the Haven project was initiated.

Together the women formed a committee called Interdependent Homes for People Needing Assistance, known as The Havenhub Committee. What has ensued is a journey of passion and commitment that has seen six women prepared to take on the mantle of providing support and assistance to tenants, in partnership with Prahran Mission, the designated service provider of the Haven units.

In late 2016, the Committee, recognising the need for all families to be involved in the onsite activities and decision-making of Haven South Yarra, merged with the local family group and bacame the HSY Family Hub.


From left: Elizabeth Byrne, OAM, Christine Smedley, Dawn Kay, Isabel Cid, Rosalie Cotter