The important reason why St Basil’s homeless charity is raising £1m as it marks 50 years in Birmingham

Youth homelessness charity, St Basils, is celebrating its 50 anniversary by hosting a fundraising Gala Dinner tonight (Friday, October 7) kick-starting ambitions to raise £1 million throughout the year

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St Basil’s helps 4,000 young people aged 16 to 25 who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless, each year in Birmingham.

Founded in 1972 the charity’s work is becoming more important than ever as the cost of living crisis continues to bite.

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One of the charity’s huge successes is its Live and Work scheme in Sandwell which was founded seven years ago which helps young apprentices and young workers with rent. An independent evaluation found that for every £1 invested in the programme, which helps keep the youngsters in work, there has been a £14 return to the public purse.

Tonight’s Gala dinner at Edgbaston Stadium will kick-start an exciting year of fundraising for St Basil’s to build on its successes - with ambitions to raise £1 million and help extend the Live and Work initiative to Birmingham.

The evening is being hosted by Heart FM favourite, Ed James, with live music, entertainment, and a charity auction – offering guests the opportunity to bid for a range of prizes, including a summer holiday in Cornwall and a tour of the House of Commons.

St Basils CEO, Jean Templeton, said: “We are delighted to be celebrating our work over the past 50 years with a Gala Dinner at the world-renowned Edgbaston Stadium in Birmingham.

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“We are committed to ensuring that young people do not experience homelessness as part of growing up. We want young people to feel cared about, to have trusted support, and somewhere safe, suitable, and affordable to live that enables them to learn and work.

“The present cost of living crisis is creating significant additional challenges for many. For young people at risk of homelessness, this can appear insurmountable. We believe our 50th anniversary is an ideal opportunity to call upon our supporters to use our collective will, skill, and resources to enable those young people to thrive and achieve their dreams and ambitions.”

To purchase a ticket for the Gala Dinner, please contact Barrie Hodge on [email protected].

St Basil’s young people’s homeless charity in BirminghamSt Basil’s young people’s homeless charity in Birmingham
St Basil’s young people’s homeless charity in Birmingham

A bit more information about St Basil’s

Founded on 10th October 1972, St Basils works with young people aged 16-25 who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, to enable them to find and keep a home, grow their confidence, develop their skills, increase opportunities, and prevent homelessness.

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The charity helps over 4000 young people each year within the West Midlands region with specific services in Birmingham, Coventry, Sandwell, Solihull, Warwickshire, and Worcestershire.

It offers a range of outreach, advice, support, accommodation, employability, and engagement services to help young people regain the stability they need to rebuild their lives and gain skills, confidence, and employment to move on and break the ‘cycle of homelessness’.

St Basil’s young people’s homeless charity in BirminghamSt Basil’s young people’s homeless charity in Birmingham
St Basil’s young people’s homeless charity in Birmingham

About the Live and Work scheme

Founded in 2015, in partnership with Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, the scheme provides accommodation for young apprentices and young workers aged 16 to 24, who have experienced homelessness. Rents are deflated below benefit level, so that young people do not have to dual navigate the benefits system while working.

Since its opening, some 120 young people have lived in the scheme, all working and benefit free. An independent evaluation concluded that for every £1 invested in the scheme, there is a £14 return to the public purse over 10 years.

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The scheme has been recognised through a number of national awards including two for NHS partnership work, one for ‘Excellence in Education’, the 2018 National Housing Award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Tackling Homelessness’, and the 2020 National Housing Award for ‘Homelessness Partnership of the Year’.

The Live and Work initiative works with young people, whether they are homeless or at risk of homelessness, to provide them with truly affordable accommodation and access to apprenticeships and other employment, enabling them to live, work, earn and learn.

To find out more and how you can help, please visit the St Basil’s website.

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