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Almost £1 million of public funds saved thanks to programmes to get young residents into work


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Almost £1 million of public funds saved thanks to programmes to get young residents into work

St Basils and University of Birmingham’s BOOST and MST4Life™ programmes have saved the public purse almost £1 million, concludes an evaluation by the Birmingham Business School.

The Birmingham Business School (BBS) has conducted an external evaluation of two St Basils programmes co-designed with and implemented by the Department of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences. These programmes are BOOST and MST4Life™.

Both these programmes are aimed at helping our young residents back into education, training and ultimately employment.

Homelessness is on the rise and it is well recognised that homelessness and repeat homelessness impacts negatively on society. It both puts a strain on our public services and reduces the life chances of the individual, hindering the productivity of the economy’s workforce.

The evaluation focuses on examining the educational and employment outcomes, as well as housing status, of participants. It conducts a cost-benefit analysis of the two programmes, and calculates, taking the costs of implementation into account, the ultimate savings for the public purse at almost £1 million!

What are BOOST and MST4Life™?

Under the BOOST programme a worker is assigned to each NEET (Not in Employment, Education or Training) young person to offer a range of activities to enhance their life skills and work as a team around the young person to address their wider support needs.

My Strengths Training For Life™ (MST4Life™) is strengths-based programme which involves ten sessions prior to a four-day/three-night residential aimed at developing emotional control, teamwork, problem-solving and organisation skills amongst homeless young people. These skills are essential to enter and remain in education and the workforce. MST4Life™ is delivered at BOOST projects, and where requested as part of our Employability and Youth Voice programmes.


The review exercise was conducted in two steps. First, identifying clients of St Basils who were hosted in projects where these two programmes were not available but had similar characteristics to the participants, for example, in terms of age and gender. Thus providing a comparison group. They then compared the outcomes of the participants and those in the comparison group.

They also compared the cost of these programmes against the savings achieved in terms of unemployment benefits, welfare benefits and healthcare costs.


The evaluation found that both programmes led to significant positive outcomes for the homeless young people. They have increased the likelihood that a homeless NEET young person achieves full transition into EET (Employment, Education and Training) and have reduced the likelihood of no transition.

As a result significant savings to the public purse have been made, achieving between them £937,000 worth of savings!

The University of Birmingham are looking to roll out MST4Life™ beyond the West Midlands and are actively looking for partners who can help them realise this aim. 

Find out more:

There will be a public lecture about MST4Life™ on 27th February 2020. Book now.



UoB economic outcome evaluation for MST4Life  – Executive summary