Story: Lisa Swift
On 24th June the housing project, Burngreave Young People’s Service, celebrated its first birthday with a barbeque and special guests.
The large house on Burngreave Road has been home to young people for many years, but in June 2009 the service was taken over by the UK’s largest social care organisation, Turning Point, and it hasn’t looked back.
The project provides 30 self-contained flats for young people who are either homeless or are at risk of being homeless, but more than just a place to stay the Turning Point project gives both emotional and practical support. Service Manager Sarah Gregory told us:
“We support 16-25 year olds, with a focus on young people from BME communities. We give support with life skills and accessing employment. Young people come to us from a whole range of different circumstances, including family break down. We aim to give them the right support to move on and live independently.”
The project works alongside Sheffield Futures who provide extra activities to build confidence and skills. This summer young people are involved in organising their own residential.
Speaking to young people at the project it was obvious that Burngreave Young People’s Service was really making a difference for those staying there. April told us,
“I’ve been living here for about 16 months. Turning Point have helped me with college and my finances and benefits, now I’m looking forward to moving into my own house, I’ve been to have a look and its got a nice back garden. I’ve made so many good friends here, they are like a family.”
19 year old Saleh has been with the project for 7 months, he was also getting ready to move on, “It’s the only place where I’ve really got help, you can ask for help with forms and benefits. I never used to be able to save up now I can manage my money. It’s helped to build my confidence and I’d advise anyone to come here.”
Junior explained how the project helped him after he came out of prison, “I’ve been here a year, and I feel like everyone is treated equally, the staff are very understanding. It helps to build your self-esteem. It’s like a big family here.”
Young People can access the project by referral through a number of other services. For more information contact Sarah Gregory on 275 2134.