Phase 2 of homelessness charity, St Basils’, Live And Work Scheme begins in Sandwell with support from LandAid

Work has begun to develop the next phase of homelessness charity, St Basils’ innovative live and work project in Sandwell, with the refurbishment of former doctors and nurses residences to create an aspirational young workers’ ‘village’.

The live and work concept, launched by St Basils in 2015, with support from LandAid, delivers a truly affordable housing option to young workers, many of whom have experienced homelessness.  The scheme enables young workers to pay rent from their earned income without the need to rely on welfare benefits for additional support.

The ground-breaking scheme has been supported through Landaid funding, amongst some other donors. It is being delivered in partnership with Sandwell Council, Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, Homes England, Equans and, builds on the learning from the award-winning phase 1 which was completed in 2015, providing student-style accommodation for young apprentices.

Phase 2 of the scheme will deliver 54 self-contained apartments for young workers, providing move-on from the shared accommodation in phase 1 and ensuring that the link between homelessness and unemployment can be broken.

Jean Templeton, Chief executive of St Basils said: “Providing a safe, affordable home which enables young people to live, work, earn and learn is what we want for all those we care about. This scheme and the partners who have made this possible, illustrates what can be achieved when we come together and use our collective will, skill and resources, to fulfil a universal family role. I couldn’t be more proud or more grateful to all those involved and to the young people who have demonstrated why this type of scheme works.”

Councillor Charn Singh Padda from Sandwell Council said: “Innovative schemes such as this are vitally important to help local young people into secure jobs and accommodation, bringing wider benefits to Sandwell residents and economy as a whole.”

Richard Beeken, Chief Executive at Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust said: “This is a fantastic project which is an exemplar of great partnership working.  We are delighted that the next phase of the Live and Work programme is bringing life back into these buildings. As part of the scheme we will provide apprenticeships to young workers and this opens up tremendous opportunities for them as they embark on their career path. We are proud to be involved in such a worthwhile project.”

The Affordable Housing Grants team at Homes England said: “We are pleased to support the development of high-quality homes using affordable housing grant. We are committed to supporting St Basils who have ambitions to support young workers to have a safe and affordable place to live and our investment through AHP 21-26 allows us to do that.  We are delighted that this funding will enable much needed new homes in Sandwell.”

Paul Bingham, Regional Director at Equans said: “The success of the first phase of this project is something we’re incredibly proud to have played a part in, so we jumped at the opportunity to work with St Basils again. Making a difference to the communities we work in is really important to us, so it’s a privilege to be able to work with our partners to help provide stability for young people who otherwise might have limited options when it comes to housing and employment.”

Daniel Mulligan, LandAid Midlands Board Chair said: “The Live and Work Village is truly a life changing project. Its ability to change the course of young people’s lives by addressing the basic needs of living accommodation and employment is as inspirational as it is effective. The LandAid Midlands Board are proud to have gathered the talent, energy, and goodwill of the Midlands construction sector. We will continue to support St Basils in the coming year during this transformative period, helping them secure the success of this transformative project.”

It is hoped that this scheme will inspire others around the country to look at alternative options to provide housing solutions for young people. 

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