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Foundation visits St Basils award-winning programme

St Basils is a charity that works with young people across the West Midlands, aged 16-25, who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. It enables them to find and keep a home, grow their confidence, develop their skills and improve their life opportunities.


In this way, St Basils tackles the root of the issue and ultimately helps to prevent homelessness amongst the young people with whom it works.

Martyn Richardson (R) with the St Basils team

The Richardson Brothers' Foundation initially supported St Basils' 'Big Birmingham Sleepout' in December 2021, and trustees were keen to learn more about how the charity works with young people and is striving to 'design out homelessness' through a series of progressive and award-winning programmes.


Representatives from the Foundation paid a visit to the 'Live and Work' scheme in Sandwell, where they were joined by St Basils CEO, Jean Templeton, and Head of Fundraising, Barrie Hodge.


'Live and Work' opened in 2015, offering accommodation to 32 young people at one time and supporting them in finding work placements, paid apprenticeships and entry level employment opportunities.


An independent evaluation of the scheme has shown how it can make significant savings to the public purse over time, with a £14 ROI for every £1 invested over a period of ten years, while it has also gone on to win the 'Outstanding Contribution to Homelessness' category in the 2018 National Housing Awards, and the 'Homelessness Partnership of the Year' in the 2020 UK National Housing Awards.


Jean Templeton, St Basils CEO, said:

"Our Live and Work model has tested a ground-breaking approach to providing accommodation which underpins young people's entry into and sustainment of employment.
Some 120 young people have lived in the scheme since it opened in 2015, all overcoming difficult starts, some with multiple needs and all with the trauma of the underlying issues which led to homelessness - None have returned to homelessness."

Live and Work has proven so successful that a second phase, with 54 new units of accommodation, has now received funding and is expected to open to young people who require the support before the end of the year.


A spokesperson for the Richardson Brothers' Foundation said:

"The innovative approach taken by the St Basils team towards their objective to 'design out homelessness', and the way they develop deep partnerships in order to help make this happen, is truly inspiring - the Foundation has been delighted to support their efforts in recent months."

To learn more about St Basils please visit www.stbasils.org.uk