Woodleaze is a supported living scheme designed for care leavers and 16-25 year olds at risk of homelessness. With the new occupants moving in, we take a look at the impact this project is having for young people in the community.
Solon South West is a small, Bristol-based charitable housing association with big ambitions, dedicated to supporting the communities it serves.
Last year, with the help of £630,000 in grant funding from Homes England, Solon South West was able to refurbish a disused care home in Yate, South Gloucestershire, to create Woodleaze – 18 high quality, self-contained studio flats.
These flats have been tailored to meet the needs of disadvantaged young people in the area; half of the units are specifically designed for young care leavers, providing the support they need to transition to independent living, and the other half are available to young people from a range of backgrounds, particularly those at risk of homelessness. The development includes fully accessible communal spaces, giving residents a space to socialise.
As well as working with Homes England, Solon South West Housing Association partnered with 1625 Independent People, a young persons charity, to deliver tailored support and skills training for all those living at Woodleaze.
The vision is “for the young people to thrive and become a key asset in our communities and for the community to contribute, through opportunities and support, to the success of the project.” 1625 Independent People will support this by providing residents with access to training and employment opportunities.
The work at Woodleaze is particularly impactful for South Gloucestershire Council who see the provision of additional support for care leavers as a key priority.
Anna Klimczak, Chief Executive of Solon South West, said: “We are driven by the goal of providing excellent homes and housing services for all and so the opening of the new Woodleaze accommodation is important to us because it will directly help care leavers and young people at risk of homelessness.
“We are really proud to have been involved in the transformation of an old fashioned and unloved care home into high-quality modern accommodation that will provide much needed support for 18 young people. Without the funding from Homes England, we wouldn’t have been able to do this.”
If you are interested in affordable homes funding for your scheme, take a look at our Affordable Homes Programme.