Innovative community-led scheme to help tackle homelessness in the Borough
The Council’s Housing team have invested in support for homeless people in the Borough by entering a year partnership with Beam, the award-winning social enterprise platform.
The approach uses a combination of allocated case workers and community crowdfunding to help those eligible to find stable employment and lift people out of homelessness.
Eligible residents are referred to the scheme by the Council’s Housing team. They are allocated a dedicated Beam caseworker, who prepares their fundraising page and supports with CV writing, job applications and house-hunting.
The total raised through community crowdfunding can be used for housing needs such as tenancy start-up costs, furniture, a mobile phone as well as employment support through a laptop for training and job searches, clothing for interviews, travel and training fees and expenses.
Donations come from members of the public, who receive updates on the people they support and send messages of encouragement along the way – boosting the recipient’s confidence and wellbeing.
As part of this package, Beam will also be contacting local businesses and landlords in the area to promote job placements and housing options to match with the scheme’s clients.
Beam’s programme has supported over 1,000 people back into stable jobs and homes using community crowdfunding donations to the sum of over £3.5 million across the UK since 2017.
Seb Barker, co-founder and COO of Beam, said: “Beam is using technology to empower the most disadvantaged people in our society, by giving them an online support network and all the tools they need to accelerate their journey into stable work and housing. We’re thrilled to be working in partnership with Eastleigh Borough Council to level the playing field for people experiencing homelessness.”
The scheme is funded by the Government’s Homeless Prevention Grant which has a key focus around supporting households to prevent and relieve their homelessness issues. The Council’s Housing team are aiming to identify 25 service users over a 12-month period.
The Council’s Cabinet Member for Social Policy, Councillor Paul Bicknell, said: “A home is a cornerstone of wellbeing, and the Housing team and local agencies work hard all year round to help those who are losing or have lost their home. Thanks to the cost-of-living crisis, the Council has seen more demand for these services which in turn has put extra pressures on them. We hope these innovative community-driven packages will further enforce our commitment to supporting the vulnerable by helping to provide a home for them, something that everyone should be afforded”.