Karinya’s New Home

Karinya House is moving to a new home. We invite the community to help us so that this can be a place where women can call 'Home' for while; where they can build their 'Hope'; where they can dream their new 'Horizon'. Karinya House - Home. Hope. Horizon.

Our new purpose built Home is almost complete. Fully funded by the ACT Government, construction of the new facility began late in 2015. The new Home for Karinya House will be completed in August 2016.

Karinya House will lease the entire premises and the facility remains a new and valuable asset for Housing ACT.

It is nearly 19 years since Karinya House commenced operation on 29 September, 1997. As many of our supporters are aware, this new Home has been a long term vision of the organisation and we are proud that it is coming to fruition.

The new Home will double Karinya’s residential accommodation capacity, as well as providing a designated area for the provision of outreach support including our groups program.

This purpose built Home exemplifies best practice with collaborative partnerships encompassing community, corporate and government sectors. This relationship is critical to the provision of residential and outreach support to the most vulnerable women in our community.

Karinya House was responsible for the fit out of all the homes, counselling and office areas.   At a project cost of around $420,000, the required funding target was, rather overwhelmingly, met with significant corporate and community support, both financially and in-kind.

However, the move for Karinya House will also involve renewed annual funding endeavours in partnership with government, private and corporate sectors, to ensure that the increased annual operating costs of full service delivery, are funded into the future.

Karinya House is supported by private individuals and corporate sponsors, and their generosity is acknowledged through our publicity and promotion.

We would love to speak with you if you or your organisation is in a position to support Karinya in a small or large way, and we can make a commitment to get together and work out some kind of mutually beneficial partnership.

View the Karinya House Purpose Built Facility Site Plan and Karinya’s New Home Blog

Latest News

September 22, 2016

Moving Karinya House

Karinya House is now fully operational in the new purpose built facility.  We are very pleased to be able to say that it really does make a difference.

The women who are now residing in the beautiful new spaces of Karinya House are loving their “Homes”.  The cottages and units are simply fabulous for independent living, whilst determining future plans. The supported accommodation residence has such lovely big rooms for living.

The benefits of having all the staff in one location, as well as the staff themselves having some space to work is just wonderful, and we are literally walking around pinching themselves! It is such a change.

We have put together a bit of a photo gallery of the move and the opening – it is a bit of fun – and provides a demonstration of the broad skill set of our staff and volunteers.  We must admit that the intensity of those four weeks in August did not give us time to take many photos of the setting up and moving in with all the many volunteers from Karinya, Rotary Belconnen and Ginninderra, Melba Mens Shed, Lions Belconnen and many others.  We also did not take many photos of the fond farewells of moving out of our old Karinya, home for almost 20 years! Despite all the excitement, our Executive Director, Marie-Louise, and Property Services Manager, Luisa Lopes, who have both been on staff for Karinya the longest, did shed the odd tear of farewell we are sure. Luisa, after completing the set up of the New Karinya with all the many hands, has since had a beautiful daughter, not two weeks after the official handover. Congratulations indeed! A joyous part of the celebrations, and quite symbolic of the Spirit of Karinya.

As our Executive Director, Marie-Louise, has since said during this past week, “Dear Friends of Karinya, We are now in our new Home and we have 10 wonderful women with us! We have 30 more women being supported from this new Home out in the community. We have many others being referred. Our new focus is to sustain our funding base and continue fundraising efforts to reach our annual operating target of 50% non-government funding. (Our Annual Operating Budget is $1.5m, of which $700,000 comes from the community through Friends and Champions, as well as awesome fundraisers. As a community based not for profit we rely on our community for annual support.) From now (September) until 30 June 2016, we need to raise $545,000.”

So dear Friends, the services do continue and they have literally expanded ‘overnight’ – with residential capacity  reached within the first two weeks.  Your continued support is vital.

Please – if there is anything we can do for our part please do let us know. Any suggestions or comments from our supporters are always welcome.

We could not have many at the official handover of the new facility, and as mooted we are having an Open Day for those of you who may be interested to see the new Karinya.

As we move on to this next stage of the Karinya Journey, do enjoy this video, courtesy of Missing Bits Productions. The lovely Ben Wade does this wonderful work for us at no cost.  Thank you! and enjoy.



August 30, 2016

The New Karinya – Official Opening – 31 August 2016

Media Release

The new home for Karinya House for Mothers and Babies was officially opened today, 31 August 2016, by the ACT Chief Minister, Andrew Barr.  The $4.45 million dollar new development will provide purpose built facilities to improve services to mothers and babies through the Specialist Homelessness Services Strategy and the Step up for Kids Out of Home Care Strategy.

Karinya House is humbled and privileged to be the first lessee of this wonderful complex and we hope to remain the lessees for many years to come. The ACT Government have created a valuable community asset which in its first tenure to Karinya House will provide beautiful homes and places of support for pregnant and parenting women.   Karinya House provides supported accommodation, transitional housing, outreach, support groups and casework services to pregnant and parenting women and their families who are in crisis.  The opening of this new purpose built facility will support Karinya House to consolidate and improve the services they provide to the community.

The Karinya House Association has held this vision for many years, since the inception of our services in September 1997, entirely established by the community for the community.  In 2009 with both of our residential ACT Housing properties full to capacity on a continual basis, we forwarded a proposal to the ACT Government outlining the vision of an enhanced physical location for our service. We thank the Chief Minister, and former Chief Ministers as well as other members of the Legislative Assembly for their support over so many years since our inception in 1997.

The ACT Government provides recurrent funding for components of the Karinya services through the Specialist Homelessness Services Strategy and the Step up for Kids Out of Home Care Strategy. We enjoy a positive and constructive working relationship with the ACT Government and we extend our thanks to all Ministers and Staff.

Karinya House is a local, grass roots, community based organisation with almost 50% of its annual operating costs being supported each year by recurring donations from the Canberra Community. This same community support has ensured the fit out of this facility to the highest quality. We have been overwhelmed by the support of so many throughout this project and we thank all the community partners and volunteers involved in this project.

We commend and thank the members of the Canberra and Regional community who continue to support Karinya House through annual recurring donations. As stated almost 50% of our annual operating costs come from recurring and annual donations from business, families and individuals in the Canberra region (and beyond).  This facility will double residential capacity and there will also be an impost on annual operating costs.   We encourage members of the Canberra community to remain or become Friends of this expanding and vital service.

The most important aspect of this project is the purpose of this facility.  This complex will be home for pregnant and parenting women in our community who are without many of the supports in life that we take for granted.  50% of women supported by Karinya House are homeless.  63% of women present with histories of family violence.  Every day we witness great courage and tenacity.  We are privileged to be part of their stories.

We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land upon which the facility resides, the Ngunnawal people. We wish to acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region. We would also like to acknowledge other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who may be associated with Karinya House.

August 25, 2016

The New Karinya – Moving in Day!


Dear Friends of Karinya

Yes, we are moving in any day now and we will celebrate these lovely new places for pregnant and parenting women, who have been impacted by life’s happenstance.

As you would appreciate it will take some time to settle in …. We would love you to visit us during the Karinya House Open Day.

This will be on Friday, 18 November – between 10-2pm. Hopefully everyone will not come at once!

Keep an eye on the website and our eNewsletter as we will have online bookings, for the purposes of catering and security with the address.

(Please note – whilst there will be our Friends and others who do know where we are, the physical address for Karinya House is not for publication.)

There will be an official event in late August, hosted by the ACT Government.  The new housing complex is a major community asset. We are privileged to be the first lessees and hopefully we will remain so for many years to come. This official handover is limited to only a small number of guests, which has been difficult to manage. There are so many faithful and long time supporters of Karinya House. We do value and appreciate you. We know you will understand this situation and we thank you.

We look forward to meeting you throughout the day on Friday 18 November. If interest is high we may have to run another open day or two. And we will; we want you to see what you have helped create.

We also welcome your ongoing care and support as a Friend of Karinya.