On 10th October 2013, World Homeless Day, Birmingham City Council announced that Birmingham was the first city to sign up to a collective approach to ‘End Youth Homelessness’.
In response to this campaign in the run up to the day, both the public and private sectors in Birmingham pledged their support to the range of ‘asks’ of the campaign (including better access to housing options, healthcare, training and jobs). See who they are and what they had to say about the aims of the End Youth Homelessness campaign below.
Councillor Steve Bedser, Birmingham City Council Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, is leading on this citywide approach.
Councillor Steve Bedser outside BCC Council House on World Homeless Day
"It's highly appropriate on World Homeless Day that Birmingham - as a city - pledges to end youth homelessness".
"Our young people deserve every opportunity to develop and flourish and the city council is delighted to be working with St Basils and other partners from across the city to support this campaign."
Here are other key representatives in Birmingham who have signed up and pledged their support:
Brian Carr, BVSC said:
“The UK must face up to a couple of sobering statistics in relation to our young people.80,000 a year experience homelessness and almost one million under the age of 25 are without jobs. These figures are totally unacceptable and we must work together to change them.That’s why I’m pledging BVSC’s support to the End Youth Homelessness alliance and its efforts to remove the unnecessary obstacles which blight young people’s lives. By working to increase the number of affordable homes and employment opportunities, and by ensuring that mediation and prevention resources are in place right across the country, we can support our young people to find their talents and reach their potential – and that can only bring great benefit to us all”.
David Mullins (second from left) with members of the Housing Communities Research Group from the Social Policy and Sport Psychology Departments
"The End Youth Homelessness pledge highlights the devastating impact that having no settled home means for other areas of a young person’s life; particularly education, self- esteem and job prospects. It is therefore appropriate that the Housing Communities Research Group in the Social Policy Dept at Birmingham University is a signatory to the first City Pledge to End Youth Homelessness."
- David Mullins, University of Birmingham
"My Trust supports the campaign as it recognises the hugely beneficial impact on a person's mental health that having a safe place to sleep has for young people. Take this away and the risk of mental health problems rises significantly".
-John Short, CEO, BSMHT
Janice Stevens, MD of Health Education West Midlands said:
“Health Education West Midlands is delighted to be working with St Basils to play their part in reducing homelessness for young people. Our work in partnership will give young people a chance to both find a safe place to live and ultimately gain a career in the NHS.”
The Right Reverend David Urquhart, Bishop of Birmingham
"Today the Christian community pledges its support to Birmingham’s campaign to End Youth Homelessness. Jesus calls individuals and communities to be people who give hope. By working together, partnering with St Basils and other organisations across the city, we can show love and care to some of the most vulnerable people in our society. I believe that our common purpose can act as a catalyst for change that gives a hope and a future to every young person."
Joy Warmington, BRAP
“Every young person deserves the stability, security and the protection that come from having suitable accommodation. Birmingham prides itself as being one of Britain’s most youthful cities – a welcoming city and a city where all can achieve their potential. It cannot be a city where young people are unable to fulfil their potential because their lives are blighted by homelessness. That’s why brap are supporting Birmingham’s pledge to end youth homelessness”.
Pete Richmond (far left) with staff from Birmingham Social Housing Partnership
“As a membership organisation for Housing Associations in Birmingham, ending youth homelessness is absolutely an aim we support. Young people need stable accommodation and a base to build from if they are to go on to successfully contribute to their communities. Here is an aim that unites all of us and if we are to ensure this doesn’t happen in our city we must do more than just back it; we must take action too.”
-Pete Richmond, BSHP
Claire Rigby, Groundwork
Nick Venning, Chair of Thrive (Birmingham Business network)
“Youth homelessness and its common attendant of youth unemployment are one of the great social challenges of our time. However, a decade into the 21st century, we have a real opportunity in Birmingham to permanently end youth homelessness for the common good of business and society.”
Sharon Willis, Accord Group
“Young people who experience homelessness struggle to develop independent living skills as their primary needs are not being met. They can become demoralised and lose their self worth increasing the possibility that they will never achieve their full potential.
Moseley and District [part of the Accord Group] supports the aim to End Youth Homelessness in Birmingham as our young population should be given every opportunity to achieve their goals and make a valuable contribution to their society. Young people are our future!”
Alan Fraser, YMCA
“At Birmingham YMCA we believe every young person should have the opportunity to live life in all its fullness. That’s why we believe it’s time to end a major blight on too many young lives - youth homelessness.”
Ruth Cooke, Midland Heart MD said:
“Ending youth homelessness in Birmingham means we can really give our young people a great start in life, so that they can help make Birmingham a world class city”.
Paul Senior (Keepmoat) and Elaine Elkington
"Soar Build believes in giving young people a fair chance to succeed in life through its training and employnent initiatives.
Having a safe and secure home is a vital ingredient for our trainees so we are proud to support the End Youth Homelessness champaign in Birmingham as a caring and supportive employer".
Martin Allsopp, President of the Law Society 2013-14
Vij Randeniya, Chief Fire Officer of West Midlands Fire Service 2009 - 2013
Young people from St Basils
MohammedAl-Rahim CEO Freshwinds
Young people accessing Trident Reach the People Charity's services at Midland Heart Foyer