Older women are the fastest-growing group of people at risk of housing distress and homelessness in Australia. The Footprints Housing Older Women Support Service (HOWSS) is here for older women in QLD to receive housing information, services and support.

The service is available for older women throughout Queensland and offers:

A dedicated website is available at www.HOWSS.org.au

From where I was to where I am now is just … mountains. I didn’t think I was going to get through this one. It’s just made such a difference, just having a place and having an affordable place, it’s all about having a foundation to start with.
How can HOWSS help you?

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HOWSS is a flexible and responsive service that offers free and confidential advice and support to women (50 years and over, and 45 years and over for First Nations women) who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, including assistance as early as possible to avoid homelessness. We provide one-to-one assistance to you, including telephone and face-to-face support, or link you to a service that can help.

To connect with HOWSS:

  • Call Footprints HOWSS on 1800 366 877
  • If you are in Brisbane, drop into our HOWSS Hub downstairs at 31 Thomas Street, West End.
  • If you are in Mackay, connect with our HOWSS Spoke based in Wood Street, Mackay.

Our staff offices are open from 9am-4pm Monday to Friday.

All other support services (including outreach and telephone support) are available between 8:00am-4:30pm Monday to Friday.

What does HOWSS provide?

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  • assistance to find housing and support assistance
  • face-to-face contact with skilled staff
  • volunteer peer support from people with lived experience
  • telephone and online advice and advocacy
  • outreach services through case management
  • information and linkages to other human service support agencies and organisations in your local area
  • engagement and education sessions for older women, and the sector
  • state-wide collaborative regional responses.
HOWSS aims to:

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  • Support women to explore their safe and affordable housing options
  • Work with women to address the barriers to safe and affordable housing options
  • Link women to wrap around services to support tenancy sustainment.
Housing Older Women's Support Service HOWSS client
The Handy Guide for Older Women

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Are you an older woman and worried about your housing?

Access the Handy Guide for Older Women for information about:

  • How to navigate the various housing options in Queensland – how to apply, tips and advice on best ways to do this
  • Emergency phone numbers
  • Accommodation such as drop-in support centres, accommodation units and housing services
  • Food and welfare; such as food vans, kitchens and Centrelink
  • Health services such as hospitals, street doctors and community health centres
  • Guide to legal assistance for tenancy/housing problems, and victims of crime
  • Guide to community and specialist services for domestic violence support, family and immigration support
  • Information about facilities such as public libraries, lockers, free transport and toilets
  • Employment
Becoming a peer volunteer

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Housing Older Women Support Service (HOWSS) has peer volunteers in Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast areas.

Are you:

  • An older woman who has experienced homelessness or housing instability and now have access to safe and secure housing?
  • Able to provide 1 to 1 support to women through sharing your personal story of lived experience to inspire hope?
  • Availability to offer voluntary support at least once per fortnight for at least sixty minutes duration?
  • Living In Brisbane, Sunshine Coast or Gold Coast and/or willing to meet with women in these regions?


If you would like to know more about becoming a Peer Volunteer, please call HOWSS on 1800 366 877 or email howss@footprintscommunity.org.au for more information.

Housing Older Women's Support Service HOWSS client
Find out more

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You can connect with HOWSS via:


A dedicated website is available at www.HOWSS.org.au

Download the HOWSS brochure and flowchart:

Housing Older Women's Support Service brochure thumbnail

Footprints has worked with the Housing for the Aged Action Group (HAAG) in the establishment of this service; partners within the Department of Housing; older women’s interest groups and other key stakeholders.

Who is this program for?

Eligibility criteria

Women aged 50+, 45+ First Nations at risk of or experiencing housing distress and/or homelessness.

Geographical region

HOWSS is available throughout Queensland.

How to refer

To be referred to this program email or call the HOWSS team:


If you need urgent assistance, please call the Homeless Hotline on 1800 474 753.

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