Homelessness and deprivation are major problems in East Ayrshire. Unemployment levels are high and there are growing signs of affordable housing shortages.
The local Community Housing Advocacy Project (CHAP) offers one-to-one support to young people facing homelessness or issues which may cause homelessness, providing guidance, support and representation at hearings and court.
LandAid awarded £110,000 to CHAP to bring to life an innovative shared tenancy project. The project pairs up vulnerable 16-24 year olds and offers each pair accommodation in a small house for six months. It's a non-threatening environment which enables young people to take control of their lives while still having a safety net.
Our funding helped convert three derelict properties into homes and paid for the salaries of support staff who help residents with practical skills including managing a tenancy and moving into employment.
The project is a lifeline to local young people. It has already housed six young people in shared accommodation and provided holistic and practical support to help them become valued members of the community. Katie*, a young person on the project, said: "The project teaches you how to manage your own property and how to budget your money on food, gas, electric and other bills too. If there was a project like this when I first moved out, everything would have been ten times better."
*Name has been changed to protect her anonymity