"Homelessness should not be 'part of growing up'...."
With Jean Templeton now at the helm, and after St Basils had officially become a Housing Association (RSL) and taken the time to reassess it's mission and strategic priorities, St Basils underwent a rebranding exercise moving away from 'the Boot' logo and deciding on a more young people focused design, with the 'i' emphasised in a different colour to represent a single young person and the emphasis on tailored support and developing the individual.
During this decade St Basils became the first Housing Association to achieve the highest ranking by the Audit Commission following inspection, received the Housing Corporation GOLD Award in 2006, became an RSL national Centre of Excellence in the National Youth Homelessness Scheme 2007-2009, became a Level A Supporting People provider and achieved consecutive Investors in People Awards in 2005, 2008, 2011 (and 2014).
"Proud of our continuous development since the days of our first nightshelter in St Basils Church in 1972, we are also saddened that currently youth homelessness is increasing nationally.... Whenever there are pressures on families, there are impacts on young people. Much is now known about the routes into homelessness and the barriers to overcome in moving on from homelessness. Much is also known about what works and what does not, informed by good practice, outcome monitoring and young people’s evidence. St Basils works with others to tackle and prevent youth homelessness and we continue to tackle the issues with the help and advice of young people themselves, and with long standing and new partners and supporters who believe like us that 'homelessness should not be 'part of growing up'."
Jean Templeton, St Basils Chief Executive, Statement for St Basils 40th anniversary Review in 2012
2002 - 2012
During this decade St Basils extended it's services to reach more young people and opened more supported accommodation projects, bringing the total number to 27 by 2012, enabling young people to stay near their local support networks.
In 2002, St Basils founded the Schools Training and Mentoring Project (STaMP) - award winning work with schools and peer mentors, aimed at raising awareness with school age children as to the causes of youth homelessness and where to get help and advice before problems escalate. STaMP remains to this day a crucial part of our homelessness prevention services.
In 2003 St Basils received short term funding to launch a Floating Support project specifically aimed at supporting Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual young people.
in 2004, whilst 'Life Skills' - teaching young people cooking, washing, budgeting etc had always been a part of the support St Basils had provided to residents, St Basils launched an accredited Life Skills programme to train young people in Life Skills, adhering to a recognised standard across all projects. Our OCN accredited Life Skills programme has gone from strength to strength and now finishes with a Cap and Gown Graduation Ceremony to celebrate young people's achievements.
In 2004 St Basils housing advice service 'The Link' moved to Ryder Street, at the end of Corporation Street in Birmingham City Centre. In 2010 in partnership with Birmingham City Council and 5 other providers, the Youth Hub opened in Fazeley Street close to St Basils HQ and in 2012 moved again back to St Basils Church on Heath Mill Lane where St Basils services to young people had originated. Key staff departments who had been based in offices in the converted Church moved to the Arch offices opposite.
In 2005, in line with its 'Young People First' priority, St Basils set up a 'Youth Advisory Board" giving 15 of St Basils young people a chance to form their own board to advise the main board and Chief Executive on changes to services and give young people at St Basils a voice on how the organisation should be run. The innovative scheme won the National Housing Federation Award in 2005 for Customer Engagement and 7 years later won the Birmingham City Housing Partnership Resident Involvement Award in 2012. In 2008 St Basils was asked to facilitate the National Youth Reference Group, which was based on a similar model. In 2014 the YAB has now been expanded and renamed the Youth Council. This extended group includes Resident Representatives, forging stronger links to each of the projects.
In 2005, St Basils took over management of Beoley Court and a neighbouring property providing 28 units in partnership with Redditch MBC. This was St Basils first project in North Worcestershire. Services were later extended to Bromsgrove, Kidderminster and the Wyre Forest (2009-2011)
In 2006, St Basils Staff and residents at The New Boot moved out to another property whilst major refurbishment got underway. This was completed in 2007. The refurbishment increased the capacity from 21 bedsits to 25 individual flats. Improvements included larger fully furnished rooms with en-suite bathrooms as well as an ICT training room, training kitchen and a fitness suite as well as a more welcoming reception and added security and safety features.
The official reopening was held in 2008, opened by Jean Milner, the project was renamed 'Milner Court' in memory of St Basils' late founder, Revd Les Milner, who had sadly passed away in 2002.
In 2009 Carole Gething House was also refurbished, extended and remodelled to provide self contained accommodation.
In 2009 St Basils was awarded contracts to provide services to homeless young people across Redditch, Bromsgrove and Kidderminster. In partnership with the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and West Mercia Housing Group, a new Foyer was built in New Road in Bromsgrove to provide accommodation and training facilities for 15 young people. An emergency accommodation scheme was opened for a few years in Kidderminster but this was later replaced with a purpose built foyer in Kidderminster, building on the success of the Bromsgrove partnership and model.
In 2010, St Basils received funding to set up a Supported Lodgings scheme called Home2Home for young care leavers, giving them the opportunity to lodge with members of the public living in Birmingham and experience a family environment. St Basils later secured funding to provide similar projects in North Worcestershire and Solihull from 2012.
In 2010 ‘Youthline’ and The Youth Hub were set up to provide advice and face to face assessments to all young people at risk of homelessness in Birmingham, in partnership with 6 other agencies.
In 2011, recognising that the best way to provide stability moving forwards would be to purchase accommodation, St Basils used its reserves and a deferred payment system to purchase its largest project yet, Brandon Thomas Court in Aston (later renamed John Austin Court after Chair of St Basils from 2000-2005) providing 41 units.
In 2011, St Basils secured funding to provide a Private Rental Scheme named mYPlace for 3 years within the Wyre Forest area, helping young people moving on from supported accommodation to access the private rental sector rather than just social landlords.
In 2012 mYPlace secured 3 years of funding to expand to Bromsgrove and Redditch. Our Home2Home Supported Lodgings scheme secured funding to expand into North Worcestershire and Solihull.