- $3.4 million upgrade to St Emilie's convent in Kalamunda
- Improved facility will help young women with a history of abuse, domestic violence, depression, self-harm or teenage pregnancy who are at risk of homelessness
Work has started on a new facility in Kalamunda that will provide supported residential accommodation for young women in need.
Premier Colin Barnett today turned the first sod to mark the start of construction works on the St Emilie's project on Kalamunda Road.
The Liberal National Government purchased the property - formerly known as St Emilie's convent - in 2010 for lease to the Esther Foundation for use as an accommodation facility.
The Esther Foundation provides an extensive residential health, development and leadership program for young people that includes education, vocational training and support services.
"The St Emilie's project will provide housing and support to young women with a history of abuse, domestic violence, depression, self-harm or teenage pregnancy who are at risk of homelessness," Mr Barnett said.
"The State Government is proud to be part of a three-way partnership between the Housing Authority, the Esther Foundation and Community Housing Limited to develop a new 20-bedroom, 40-bed facility on the St Emilie's site."
Community Housing Limited will finance the works thanks to Lotterywest funding of $3.4 million.
Housing Minister Brendon Grylls said the new facility's amenities would be improved, while preserving much of the original convent's rich heritage.
"The Priests' House will be retained along with the original arched facility, stained glass windows and the commemorative tablet from the chapel," Mr Grylls said.
Major works have already been completed to remediate existing asbestos and lead paint used in the original building.
The facility is scheduled to open in late 2017.
- Initial construction on the St Emilie's site dates back to the early 1880s
- The property has been used as a private residence, a holiday guest house, a hospital, a convalescent home and a convent
- WA is the only State where money raised from lottery products is distributed directly back to the community to support not-for-profit organisations
- For more information, visit http://www.lotterywest.wa.gov.au
Premier's office - 6552 5000
Housing Minister's office - 6552 6100