In early 2020, the Odyssey House Victoria Hope Centre was opened. Responding to a need in the Gippsland area, the Hope Centre will provide a Therapeutic Community with structured live-in programs for people who experience severe problems with alcohol and/or drug use, and their associated mental health issues.

On this page

Information Sessions for Residential Rehabilitation Admission

Face to face information sessions are held on a regular basis for those seeking details on entering residential rehabilitation in any of our three Therapeutic Communities (Lucknow, Mollyullah and Lower Plenty).

To find out when our next information session is, please contact one of our friendly staff members on 9420 7647 or 0481 478 499.

The information sessions are open to everyone (including friends and loved ones) and do not need to be booked. Coffee & Tea will be provided, and the sessions will cover: 

  • A Day in the Life at Resi Rehab at Odyssey House Victoria
  • Rules and requirements
  • Information about our facilities
  • Referral pathways & documentation required
  • Q & A.

Sessions are held in our head office at 660 Bridge Road, Richmond. 

If you are experiencing any flu-like symptoms or have had a COVID positive result less than 5 days beforehand, please contact us before attending any appointments or sessions so we can discuss other options to provide you with the necessary care and support.

About the program

The program provides a balance between work, structured group sessions and recreation.

Participants are encouraged to deal with self-defeating patterns of thoughts and behaviours. This occurs in a safe and supportive environment where Odyssey House’s values of trust, concern, respect, honesty and love are promoted.
Residents have access to a range of professional staff including counsellors, psychologists, psychiatrists, doctors and nurses.

All residents participate in community decision-making. They also contribute to the functioning of the community through cooking, cleaning, and working on property development and maintenance. Over time, residents take leadership roles in various departments such as the office, property management and the kitchen.

As part of the program we provide access to a Financial Counsellor who will provide information, advice and advocacy if you’re in financial difficulty. We also support residents who have debts, fines and infringements. In most cases, all costs are covered through government funding and a resident’s Centrelink contributions.

Residential Rehabilitation services at Bairnsdale are smoke-free. All residents are provided with the option of Nicotine Replacement Therapies to help support their withdrawal.

Families are able to have regular contact and visits with residents, and this increases in frequency as residents move through the stages of the program. The Odyssey House Victoria Hope Centre is located at 455 Princes Highway, Lucknow.

Take a tour

Front entrance of Hope Centre
Front entrance of Hope Centre
A photo of our pillars of values at Odyssey House
Our pillars of values at Odyssey House
Photo of our resident ducks at Hope Centre
Resident ducks
Vegetable garden at Hope Centre
Vegetable garden
Photo of the fire pit at Hope Centre, surrounded by an aboriginal mural
The fire pit
Interior garden at Hope Centre
Interior garden
Art room at Hope Centre
Art room
Exterior vegetable garden at Hope Centre
Exterior vegetable garden
A beautiful garden of brightly coloured flowers in front of a pride mural
The pride garden in full bloom
Photo of picnic tables at the Hope Centre
Picnic tables
Photo of the accomodation at Hope Centre
Resident artwork on display at the Hope Centre
We are always proud to display resident artwork


To access this program, participants need to complete a comprehensive drug and alcohol assessment in their local area. An assessment can be arranged through a local service provider in your area. Contact details can be found here.

Alternatively, you can contact DirectLine on 1800 888 236. DirectLine provides a 24-hour telephone counselling, information and referral service for anyone in Victoria wishing to discuss an alcohol or drug-related issue.

Once you have been referred to Odyssey House, a member of our admissions team will contact you to obtain further information, discuss your suitability to the program and answer any questions.


Odyssey House receives funding from the State Department of Families, Fairness and Housing. Participants are expected to contribute their Centrelink payments towards the cost of the treatment program. There are different arrangements in place for privately paying clients. All expenses associated with participation in the program are covered by Odyssey House Victoria including, but not limited, to food, accommodation, medical costs and therapeutic services.


Peter and Margaret Down first envisioned the concept for the Odyssey House Hope Centre in late 2015. Upon hearing the experiences of two people in recovery, Peter and Margaret realised that their region was poorly resourced for support services.

From 2016, plans for the, then named, Hope Restart Centre evolved. A board of local champions was formed, and strong community support was garnered. Realising that professional management was needed, the Downs approached Odyssey House Victoria and a partnership was secured. Land at Lucknow close to Bairnsdale, was located and a peppercorn lease arranged with the land owners.
Funding to build a new facility was obtained from Federal Government, from corporates, philanthropic trusts, and from Odyssey House, and funding to operate it was secured with the Victorian State Government. With the project viable, planning proceeded.

By early 2019, building commenced and, in early 2020, the 58-bed centre was ready to receive its first residents. Following its construction, management of the centre was handed over to Odyssey House and the name was changed to Odyssey House Victoria – Hope Centre. Staff were hired and a core group of seven residents came from Odyssey House in Melbourne to help new arrivals and staff learn about residential care and the Odyssey House ethos. Because of COVID-19, an official launch for 20 April 2020 was postponed, and new residents were carefully screened and admitted – in smaller numbers than originally planned.

The establishment of the Odyssey House Victorian Hope Centre is a remarkable story of how Peter and Margaret Down and the team they recruited were able to gain widespread community support throughout Gippsland, attract funding, and make their dream a reality.

With grateful thanks to all the key stakeholders and funders involved in making this dream come true:

Peter Down; Margaret Down; Richard Rijs; John Glynn; Tony Ward; Peter Neal; Ricky Ross; Julie Barling; Simon Anderson; Rod Parker; Donna McDonald; David Pollard and Adrian Jackson.

The Community of Gippsland; Victorian State Government; Australian Federal Government; The Peter and Lyndy White Foundation; Alinta Energy; Lou Yang B Power Station.

Contact Hope Centre

General enquiries: (03) 9420 7600
Intake & Assessments:

  • ACSO (regional Victoria): 1300 022 760
  • Directline (non regional Victoria): 1800 888 236

These are centralised intake numbers to arrange a personal assessment. You can nominate to come to Odyssey House Victoria Hope Centre)

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    ATCA Certified

    This certifies that Odyssey House Victoria has met requirements for certification of the Australasian Therapeutic Communities Association Standard. We are proud to be a Certified Group Therapeutic Community Member 2017-2020.