Matthew Nichols

When Matthew Nichols was given the opportunity to manage Perth’s RUAH Centre for homeless people in 2013, it came with an extra challenge: the centre had been closed for two months. Matthew developed a core team of six and reopened the centre with improvements to strategic planning, operations, staffing and client services. Being a leader and also the youngest person in the team, created challenges but the revamp resulted in an expansion of the volunteer base by 20 people, and an increase in the services provided from doctors, lawyers, employment specialists, CentreLink and Department of Housing. Matthew’s management style emphasises passion for the work, and building multidisciplinary teams. Along with onsite services such as showers, computers, clothing and food, Matthew has driven a public education and advocacy program about homelessness, through high schools, TAFEs and university.