Broxtowe Youth Homelessness

byh

Broxtowe Youth Homelessness was delighted to have recently been awarded a £3,000 donation from the Masonic Charitable Foundation.

The grant acknowledges the tremendous support work undertaken at by the charity and is exclusively for the support of homeless people in our local community whose lives and circumstances have brought them to a low point in their life.

Barry Woodhead, Provincial Charity Steward for Nottinghamshire Freemasons said of the donation:

“Both the Masonic Charitable Foundation and Nottinghamshire Masons are very pleased to be able to help the Broxtowe Youth Homelessness charity who do such an outstanding job helping those who struggle with somewhere to live. The care and attention given by those in the charity in helping people restore life and social skills was wonderful to see, together with the friendliness shown to those being helped. My visit to see the work of the charity and meeting some of those who the charity is helping was very interesting and enjoyable, and the atmosphere very relaxed yet focussed. There is clearly a strong demand for the charity’s service and they are to be congratulated on the work. We are proud to support the Broxtowe Youth Homelessness charity.”

Jessica Brannan, Project Manager commented:

"This donation from the Masonic Charitable Foundation is an incredibly important one. The £3,000 has been gifted to us to use wherever the need is greatest, which allows us to use it to underpin all our essential work - helping us make sure we can continue to fund our dedicated staff team and vitally keep the lights on at our ‘drop-in’ centre! 

We were delighted to welcome representatives from the Nottinghamshire Freemasons on behalf of the MCF to visit the centre. It is wonderful to know that we have the support and interest of our local community, as well as the Masons' national charity, which makes such a difference to so many vital organisations like ours.

With the reduction of ‘supported accommodation and floating tenancy support’, putting a roof over someone’s head alone won’t solve the issue of homelessness. At Broxtowe Youth Homelessness we recognised that young people need certain skills and support to make a house a home. With the funding from the Masonic Charitable Foundation we are able to continue to offer young people access to the BYH Living Room, a drop-in service for young people. We offer advice, support and a friendly face to any young person who is homeless, is at risk of homelessness or needs support in maintaining their tenancy. It is a time for young people to support each other too, talk to people in a similar situation and enjoy some company. We can put young people in touch with other organisations, help with understanding bills and benefits, offer emotional support, the use of a washer/dryer, access to the clothes bank, emergency food and toiletry parcels or just a cup of tea and biscuits! We are currently trying to recruit new people to join our Management Committee and any masons interested would be most welcome."

Jessica offers this real-life case study to show what can happen to a young person’s life and how the charity helps:

“Anna (not her real name) is a 20-year-old who has accessed services at BYH for the past 3 ½ years. When she first accessed our Services, she had a volatile relationship with her mother and no contact with her father. Anna's relationship had reached breaking point with her mother and she had been told to leave the family home. Anna spent some time sofa surfing and then moved into a hostel. She met staff from BYH when they attended her hostel and she joined one of their training sessions.

Anna went on to move in with her partner and became pregnant with her daughter at 17. She struggled with being a teenage mother whilst also experiencing domestic abuse by her former boyfriend. Anna did finally secure a flat for herself and her daughter, however the strains of being a young single Mum and having the responsibilities of a tenancy were too much for her and she sadly no longer has full care of her daughter. During this time Anna’s mental health was affected and she struggled to maintain her tenancy.

In October 2017 BYH were contacted by Anna’s mother asking for support to help Anna stay in her tenancy. Anna attended the drop in with her mother and was honest about the issues she was having in regard to debt, anti-social behaviour complaints and her general wellbeing. From this point onward Anna was able to access services from BYH and continued to come to the drop-in sessions where staff helped her with any queries around bills, child contact and welfare matters.

Anna has recently completed training sessions with BYH such as Living independently and Personal Emotional and Resilience, in which she thoroughly engaged in and has said to have enjoyed doing them. Anna has shared her ambition of wanting to become a cosmetologist and staff at BYH are keen to work with her in reaching this goal.

Anna feels she is back on track now, her tenancy is still under review, but she has made drastic changes to her lifestyle, redecorated the flat and now feels she has somewhere to turn if she needs help and support.”