Homeless Helped Into Work By Building Own Homes In Britian FWD

Tom Boland (wgcp@earthlink.net)
Sat, 16 May 1998 23:28:39 -0700 (PDT)

From:         COI
Date:         1998/05/12
Message-ID:   <coi1327e-world.europe.western-aab@NewsGuy.com>
Newsgroups:   newsguy.world.europe.western

233/98 - 11 May 1998


Employment Minister, Andrew Smith said local partnerships have proved
a vital force for getting young homeless people relevant training
and into work. Speaking today to the Young Builders Trust national
conference Mr Smith said:

"I have been impressed by YBT to train young people in building,
improve their confidence and motivation and by doing so, give them a
better chance of finding a job and keeping it, getting them out of
the destructive cycle of a life on benefits.

"Also impressed by the work to combat homelessness amongst young
people by helping them to build their own homes. Nothing can raise
personal esteem more than living in a house built with your own

"Young Builder's Trust has increased the number of projects, during
the last  decade, to four per year but this is set for rapid
expansion with 100 new schemes expected to get under way in the next
three years.  This expansion has been achieved  by working in
partnership with other relevant local agencies and businesses.   The
close co-operation with local authorities,housing associations, care
agencies like the Probation Service, building firms and TECs, has
been a crucial factor for success. Strategies such as the Housing
Corporation's 'Housing Plus' programme, provide important
encouragement to these projects.

"These type of innovative and exciting projects, developed in
partnership with others, are just the sort of thing we want to see
in New Deal. The four options of the New Deal for young, unemployed
include employment, work on the Environmental Task Force, work in
the Voluntary Sector and Full Time Education and Training. Training
and work experience in house building crafts could potentially fall
within all the options.

"Some young employed people are highly qualified and capable, others
will need more support. But there is potential in this latter
group. These young people need hope, encouragement, a little
support. They need someone to give them a chance and the successful
schemes which have already been supported by the YBT shows just what
can be done.


The first YBT housebuilding project was completed in Brighton in
1990, and followed by  another 12 projects in the following 7 years.
Over the next 3 years - by the year 2,000  - YBT expects to have up
to 100 schemes in the pipeline.

Young Builders' Trust Projects:

Blackbird Leys:  YBT working with the City Council, a consortium of
housing  associations and Willmott Dixon to build 12 'neighbourhoods'
of rented, private and  shared ownership homes, as well as
accommodation and facilities for the elderly.   The  Project is
supported by SRB funding and will provide over 90 training
opportunities.   In  particular, 12 disadvantaged young people - the
Pegasus Young Builders - will work with contractors to build a three
storey block of flats, which they will rent on a secure  tenancy
basis.  The young builders will undertake training in: induction and
team  building; pre-site vocational training; site based vocational
training; and training for  employment and independent living.

Peppercorn Avenue: the Blackbird Leys project provided six months
training to a  group of 8 young builders - the Oxford Young Self
Builders.   This will enable the young  people to build their own
homes at Peppercorn Avenue, as part of a partnership venture between
YBT, the Council, Oxford Citizens Housing Association and Willmott
Dixon.   The new homes - 2 bedroom houses - will be shared ownership.

YBT has been working in partnership with the Inner London Probation
Service in  Hackney, Greenwich, Lambeth and Hammersmith to provide
training for young ex- offenders.


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