Linking into 2016’s Housing Day www.housingday.co.uk – 19th September – BYHP Housing Advice Officer Justin Donovan blogs about how BYHP works with young people in and around North Oxfordshire.
#HousingDay is a national 24 hour social media event to celebrate the positive impact of social housing on thousands of tenants and those working in UK housing. Now in its fourth year, it’s become a regular part of the calendar.
What does BYHP do?
Via BYHP’s Housing & Homelessness Advice Service www.byhp.org.uk/housing-advice.html we support young people in finding and maintaining accommodation, which can be difficult given the challenges that are faced when trying to access affordable housing in the Banbury area.
However, young people do manage to access private rented accommodation at times which often results in us supporting them with understanding tenancies, learning how to live independently and everything else that they need to know when it comes to successfully living on their own.
Private tenancies often do not go as planned and that is where we play a key role in making sure that disputes are resolved properly to prevent any negative outcome for the young tenant, such as having to leave the property.
What happens if a young person cannot find private rented accommodation?
BYHP then works very closely with other organisations and in partnership with the local authority, Cherwell District Council, to make sure the young person finds some form of accommodation whether that is supported accommodation or hostel provision.
We also support the young people with various other issues and when necessary refer onto other support agencies if we cannot provide a specific type of support.
Finally, it is not just homelessness that we focus on and are able to offer professional support and guidance to young people who fall into the NEET (Not in Education, Employment and Training) category. After all, a secure home assists in being able to concentrate on going from NEET into Education, Employment and Training.
Our success in supporting young people back into employment, education or training is predominantly achieved through our employment programme “Unlocking Potential”. www.byhp.org.uk/unlocking-potential.html
How BYHP works with local housing associations and how young people link to them:
There are a number of housing associations across Oxfordshire that we come into contact with from time to time when supporting their tenants. In this type of cases our work is usually focused around a certain issue that the person may be facing which is having a negative impact on their tenancy.
We have found that working in conjunction with the housing association has always been a positive and successful way of getting the best possible outcome for the tenant and that working collaboratively with housing associations is the best way of helping to stabilise a tenant’s accommodation.
In order for people to access social housing in Oxfordshire they must firstly have a housing need in order for them to qualify for the housing register. Due to high demand for social housing the local authorities created registers that are designed to help make sure that the right people are accessing the right tenancies.
In our experience of working with local housing associations we have found that social tenancies can be the best type of tenancy for many people within the community as it gives people a higher security of tenure than private tenancies can offer.
Social housing also provides affordable accommodation for those that are less fortunate when it comes to finance meaning that they too can afford to create a lovely home for themselves and their loved ones.
BYHP will continue to offer support and advice to young people in North Oxfordshire and will continue to build relationships with all types of accommodation providers and landlords in order to provide guidance, information and help to those trying to obtain affordable housing.
If you or someone you know needs such help contact firstname.lastname@example.org, call 01295 259442 or visit BYHP at 2 Chandos Close, Banbury, OX16 4TL.
Our blog is a great way to stay up to date with current events and projects, stories from our young people and the general goings on at BYHP.