Picture of a grey torned teady bear lying on a side walk.

Short Story

The tragic death of a baby girl found washed up on the beach has highlighted a shocking crisis of homelessness on the Gold Coast.

The grim reality of Homelessness on the Gold Coast

by OneLightCharity Foundation

  • $50,000.00

    Funding Goal
  • $36,760.00

    Funds Raised
  • Campaign Never Ends

    Campaign End Method
Raised Percent :
Minimum amount is $10 Maximum amount is $5000

OneLightCharity Foundation

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Campaign Story

Homelessness is the grim reality for too many people. Sleeping rough or in boarding houses. Coupled with a culture of drugs, and domestic violence causes deep depression and a loss in self-belief.

Hi, my name is Tony Wiese, I am a director at One Light Charity. I recently addressed society’s biggest challenge in my Blog. Homelessness has existed since the beginning of humankind and has never been solved.

Image of One Light Charity Director, Tony Wiese in front of Vinnies Care Services logoEnough is enough

The main problem, there is very little affordable accommodation. The waiting time for a housing commission home could be up to 10 years.

Addiction and mental health issues

You have people who have significant mental health issues. And then there is the addiction problem.

Recently a homeless man accused of murdering his nine-month-old baby was remanded in custody, after an initial court hearing. His partner, the mother of the baby, was known to have lived in makeshift camps and parks between Tweed Heads and the Gold Coast. The mother has been released from custody. She was placed in the mental health system in Queensland. The toddler has been placed in care.

The mother was desperate for housing

Rev Brook confirmed that the parents of the dead baby were well known to many regulars at the St John’s Centre. They came to St John’s occasionally for food and other assistance. The mother was desperate for housing. But the situation on the coast is dire. Affordable housing is pretty much prohibitive.

Boarding houses are atrocious

There are boarding houses, but they are appalling places. We have homeless people who rather sleep out under the stars.

Homelessness is the grim reality for too many people

I believe that it is this gripping fear of homelessness and loss of self-belief that often causes a deep depression, domestic violence and substance abuse. Some are fortunate to receive help to bounce back, but many do not. We were told by the Salvation Army that tens of thousands of Australian men are destitute. Living in their cars and cannot provide for their families.

State-level issue

It is quite disturbing that in most western countries, like Australia, the homelessness challenge is not a local council responsibility but a state-level issue. Competing for state funds against roads, police, education and hospitals. The state government public housing departments just do not have sufficient budget to meet the demands for temporary shelter.

A holistic approach is required

Homelessness is real for many Australians and is a cause very close to my heart. The supply of temporary shelter is just the beginning but does not in itself solve the problem. A holistic approach is required starting with providing the shelter. But it must be coordinated with:


Getting the vulnerable back to producing income and providing for their families.

House of Change

The most important outcome is to establish a “House of Change”.  Temporary home facilities and services in the community, so that everybody knows there is a caring place of refuge where you receive real help to change your circumstances. Keep your family unit together, and get back on track. Only then, nobody needs to endure that killer fear of homelessness.


In the end, it seems that it will need to be the kindness of Business and their philanthropic leaders coupled with passionate not for profit volunteers that will need to step up to solve the epic social challenge of our time. Together the State needs to be lobbied to make available underutilised buildings for temporary shelter.

About One Light Charity Foundation 

The Foundation has been endorsed by the Australian Tax Office as a Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR)

The One Light Charity Foundation is a Public Ancillary Fund and exists to make Grants to individuals and other Australian Registered Charities who are also DGRs.

To combat and eradicate homelessness is the most efficient way for big business to meet their corporate social and sustainable development responsibilities. Tony teamed up with the One Light Charity Foundation and believes that working in this area is the most rewarding impact investment any corporation or fund can make in 2019 and beyond.

“I am looking forward to connecting with other  CEO’S and not for profits, on the 20th of June 2019. We set up a donation page at the Vinnies CEO Sleepout and would love it if you could support me. Hopefully, together we will be able to find the solution for our beautiful Australia.” 

Image of One Light Charity Director, Tony Wiese sleeping rough at the 2019 Vinnies CEO Sleepout.

  • CEO Sleepout fundraising for the homeless

    One Light Charity director standing infront of home build for aged homeless women

    We recently attended the official opening of Rendu House. (Accommodation for Aged Women at Risk of Homelessness)
    As of today, the six apartments are fully tenanted.

    Congratulations to our CEO Sleepout participant, Tony Wiese, who took part and for the generous support of our donors who sponsored him.

    One Light met up with Gary Webb, President St Vincent de Paul Society at the official opening of Rendu House.

    Three men standing infront of flower painting donated by One Light Charity

  • Donating 25 pairs of school shoes

    One Light volunteers in grey shirts donating school shoes

    One Light volunteers Androa and Anthoni with Lauren, Baby Give Back Gold Coast Manager.

  • 𝐇𝐞𝐥𝐩𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐭𝐨 𝐚𝐜𝐡𝐢𝐞𝐯𝐞 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐢𝐫 𝐩𝐨𝐭𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐚𝐥

    Edith Kennedy, Director and Operations Manager at Set Free Care, told us that employment agents attend every Friday between 11 am and 1 pm to support their homeless and disabled clients with employment options. She thanked our donors for their kindness and said that the makeover vouchers would help to increase confidence and self-esteem before job interviews.

    Two women holding pink vouchers

Name Donate Amount Date
Bartercard Australia Small business donors $750.00 October 08, 2021
Bartercard and Qoin donors $450.00 May 12, 2021
Gavin Rowe $1,500.00 July 09, 2019
Bevin Neil $200.00 July 09, 2019
Jessica Schneider $100.00 July 09, 2019
David Ligtenberg $5,000.00 July 09, 2019
Anonymous $5,000.00 July 03, 2019
$23,750.00 June 22, 2019
test test $10.00 May 15, 2019