There's a thought that convinces Maree Cook to share her experience of homelessness, despite her hesitation.
Her friend and neighbour Gwenda Granter sits opposite her now in the comfort and community of Betty Searle House in Chapman, a YWCA-managed affordable housing property where women support one another.
But not long ago, Ms Granter had a broken hip and elbow, and became homeless.
Ms Cook was recently homeless too, with little in savings, and unable to afford Canberra's costly rental market. Her experience, which included time in a refuge, was a low point.
The thought of Ms Granter, 80, in a similar situation is enough for Ms Cook to spread the word about the personal experience of Canberra's housing affordability crisis.
She's also a passionate voice supporting the YWCA's newest service providing affordable rental accommodation to people on low incomes.
"They're not looking at people as numbers, they are taking into consideration people's circumstances, and really treating people as people," Ms Cook says.
Rather than a silver bullet for Canberra's housing affordability crisis, the YWCA's new program provides another route out of homelessness.
Under the Rentwell initiative, the ACT's investment property owners can provide housing to low-income people at below 75 per cent of the market rate and claim the money they forego on tax.
They can also apply for a land tax exemption, under new legislation passed by the ACT government.
One of the hard parts of being homeless, Ms Granter says, is asking for help.
"There are so many places that will help you if you're willing to ask," she says.
YWCA chief executive Frances Crimmins says seeing women like Ms Granter and Ms Cook receive housing inspires her to find more solutions to Canberra's low housing affordability.
Rentwell, a program two years in the making, is one letting property owners change lives in a tangible way, she says.
The initiative isn't a form of social housing, but rather a charitable enterprise relying partly on a philanthropic grant from the Mercy Foundation.
"If you own an investment property in the ACT and want to make a lasting difference in the life of a local older woman, single mum or dad, or a family, this is your opportunity," Ms Crimmins says.
"Having affordable and secure housing gives people a chance to get their lives back on track and allows kids to form secure relationships at home, at school and in the community."
Ms Cook can vouch for that. Her job at a disability support service wouldn't have been possible without a place to live.
"Things have turned around so much that I can be a support for other people."
Under Rentwell, property owners sign a head lease with YWCA Canberra, which is responsible for making sure rental income is paid. The YWCA finds suitable tenants and sub-leases to them.
Candidates are people who are able to support themselves financially, and live independently, but whose low income locks them out of Canberra's expensive rental market.
Stories such as Ms Granter's and Ms Cook's are not unique, and structural inequalities have created a growing cohort of women without the resources to secure housing when their personal lives force them to move home.
The YWCA has a goal of finding 25 properties to lease to low-income people in Rentwell's first year, and 150 in three years, when the organisation hopes the program breaks even.
One property owner, Watson resident Krishna Sadhana, is already signed up. While it will cost her about $70 a week in rental income, she wants to act on her beliefs.
She has faced housing stress before, and now she has a home and a rental property, she wants to provide an option for low-income people.
"It does make a big difference for them, and it's a small sacrifice for a big difference," she says.