Community Housing Ltd  (CHL) has converted a historically-significant West Australian convent into safe, affordable and supported residential accommodation that will  be used to assist young women in need.

The State Government’s Department of Communities sought CHL’s expertise in providing project and development management services to deliver the facility, which has been funded by a grant from Lotterywest.

CHL Chair Fionn Skiotis says, ‘We have been delivering quality affordable housing for over two decades and it is always an honour to be recognised for our project management and design capabilities.

The St. Emilie’s Convent facility in the Perth suburb of Kalamunda will be run by The Esther Foundation, an award winning health, development and leadership program. It will provide young women with mid-term accommodation and extensive support services.

Esther Foundation Administrator Rodney Lavater says, ‘The St Emilie’s Project provides a much needed resource for young women; young mothers and teenagers aged 13-33 years who would benefit from the safe, structured and supported accommodation program.

‘Our new purpose-built residential premises will change the lives of many young women facing life-controlling struggles and issues, offering them and encouraging them the opportunity to reach their potential.’

The refurbished accommodation now includes a total of 20 bedrooms including 18 doubles. Seven of those are new self -contained units, with en-suite and kitchenette, while the existing west wing has been renovated and modified to provide 10 bedrooms, including six with en-suites. The main building has been rebuilt and now hosts a kitchen with training facilities, gymnasium, a large communal dining and living area, counselling rooms and an administration area.