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Press release: The Duke of Cambridge attends RICS and LandAid’s Launch of UK Pledge 150

Emily Hamilton | 20.11.17

On Friday (17 November 2017) The Duke of Cambridge attended the launch of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and LandAid’s Pledge150 campaign, for young people at risk of homelessness. The campaign is part of the organisation’s 150th year celebrations and was held at RICS’ London headquarters.   

The Pledge150 campaign will see RICS partnering with property industry charity LandAid, to lead the built environment sector in raising £2.25m for the provision of 150 bed spaces across all 12 UK regions by December 2018. The kick off event raised £127,000 towards the £2.25m target.

Senior figures from the UK’s leading property and construction firms gathered to take part in an auction and to ‘Pledge a Bed’.  The launch included a speech by His Royal Highness and a charity cook-off compared by BBC TV presenter, Angellica Bell, winner of this year’s Celebrity MasterChef.   The full speech can be read here.

Sean Tompkins, RICS CEO, and Paul Morrish, LandAid CEO – aided by Sean Marsey, one of LandAid’s Young Voices and now on the board for leading youth homelessness charity St. Basils; and Rihana Senay, who has been helped by New Horizon’s Youth Centre, a LandAid funded project - competed to create a winning dish judged by Steve Groves, Head Chef at Roux at Parliament Square.  The Duke of Cambridge awarded the prizes to the winners, Paul Morrish and Sean Marsey, for their mackerel with heritage carrots, citrus and sesame dish.

Matthew Howell, UK Managing Director commented: “We’re delighted that the launch of our Pledge150 campaign received such strong support, and that the Duke of Cambridge could join us. Having so many people donate £15,000 to bring a bed space to life was a great start to the campaign, and, every penny raised will make a real difference. We need to keep this momentum going, and together the built environment can make real positive change to young vulnerable people’s lives.”

Paul Morrish, LandAid Chief Executive said: “Across the country over 80,000 young people experience homelessness every year and unfortunately there simply isn’t enough safe, secure and affordable accommodation for those who need it. We are delighted to be teaming up with RICS in what is our biggest ever fundraising initiative to raise more funds for safe, secure and affordable homes for vulnerable young people across the country. The launch was a great start for the campaign, and we were proud to have the Duke of Cambridge in attendance. We look forward to a year of successful fundraising with the RICS, which will make a real difference to the lives of thousands of young people.”

RICS plans to raise funds at a variety of events and through staff and partner university initiatives. Those working in the land, property and construction sectors will also be  encouraged to join in with the challenge and think big in terms of their fundraising activities, with every penny raised making a huge difference. Just £4,000 could furnish and buy white goods for a new home for two young people, £200 could pay for a bed, giving a young person a comfortable place to sleep, and £15,000 will create one bed space.

All firms that make a corporate donation will be added to the RICS’ online campaign pledge wall and will have the opportunity to provide a quote on their support to end youth homelessness. For more information on the RICS Pledge150 campaign – including how to pledge your support, tools to get you started, and help to fundraise visit the RICS webpage here. 

As part of the RICS Pledge150 campaign, those working in the built environment may also be given the opportunity to provide pro bono property advice to local charities supporting disadvantaged young people, families and communities, including those experiencing homelessness. More information here.

See Flikr for photos from the day.