Bruce's story - working in partnership to create meaningful and sustainable change

Providing Bruce with the help he needed to get back on his feet


Bruce ran a business as a concreter. He earned a good income and was able to successfully maintain this work for many years, despite having suffered from depression for most of his life. Following the death of his mother around 2010, things got worse for him. He started drinking heavily and using drugs. He wasn’t able to properly manage his business affairs and stopped lodging tax returns.

By the time Bruce came to see us at Ozanam Community Centre he was at crisis point. He’d become homeless, his finances were in disarray, he had significant debt, he was battling substance addiction and he’d been charged with breaching a Community Corrections Order (CCO). In tandem with several outreach workers – including drug and alcohol, housing support and mental health workers - we worked with Bruce to resolve his legal problems.

We all knew his problems were interlinked. We represented him in court twice to have almost $5,000 worth of transport fines wiped and, on another occasion, to successfully argue that because of his engagement with treatment services, his CCO was no longer necessary. We also connected him with a pro bono law firm so they could assist him to have a $15,000 tax debt waived on the basis of his hardship. During this time he also secured stable accommodation.

IMCL engaged with Bruce at the right time, at the right place and with the right supports. We helped him when and where he was ready and able to receive help, and with other support service providers, enabled him to achieve meaningful and sustainable change in his life.