London Homelessness Awards Winner Announced!
Beam, an innovative new project that crowds funds to help homeless people into training and work, has won the London Homelessness Awards 2018, and the first prize of £30,000.
Beam launched in September 2017, with a simple model that allows members of the public to donate online to help homeless people access funding for the training they need to get into work. There are now over 1,500 people helping homeless people overcome homelessness for the long-term. 28 members (ex homeless people who are supported through Beam) are now in training. And all 5 of the members to have passed their training are in work in their target careers.
Beam is an innovative online service that uses crowdfunding to help homeless people to raise money for training courses and professional qualifications – then supports each individual through training and into work.
Clients (known as “members”) are recommended to Beam by respected homelessness charities including Centrepoint, St Mungo’s and Thames Reach. Beam builds an asset-based, personalised career plan with the member and crowdfunds not only training costs, but any financial barriers to career progression, including childcare. Beam purchases items on behalf of members and further provides work experience and job roles through its employer network.
In just ten months, Beam has proven a powerful new model to create opportunities for a diverse group of people experiencing homelessness, who benefit hugely from increased self-confidence from messages of support from those who fund the campaigns (known as “supporters”). Beam has raised over £110,000 from over 1,500 supporters to fund campaigns for 28 members. 18 members are currently in training, 5 are in jobs and just 2 have withdrawn from the programme. 90% of donations go transparently to “Budget items” on each member’s campaign.
Beam “graduates” already in work include Joe – homeless for over a decade – now working as a crane rigger on the Northern Line extension. Joe was referred by Thames Reach and raised £1,132 from 19 supporters in just five days. Other Beam graduates are working as electricians, delivery drivers and construction site managers, while other Beam members are training for rewarding careers in everything from bricklaying to accountancy.
The prestigious London Homelessness Awards 2018 open on Monday 9th April. The three winners of the award will be announced in October and receive £30000, £20000 and £10000.
The London Homelessness Awards are the country’s leading homelessness awards and highlight innovative practice in the homelessness sector in London. As well as the cash, the winning projects receive professional support to publicise their work and develop the profile of their organisation.
The awards are open to all projects in London working in homelessness including those from the voluntary sector, local authorities, public sector organisations or registered social landlords.
Last year’s winners was Project Vista, a project run jointly by New Horizons Youth Centre and Network Homes. This project works with young people to help them get into housing while they receive support to gain employment.
The other winners, receiving £20000 and £10000 respectively were the Resettlement Team at Prisoners Abroad and The London Borough of Southwark’s Homelessness Trailblazer project.
Simon Dow is the Executive Chair of the London Housing Foundation. He said “Every year there are new ideas to combat homelessness and these awards are simply about recognising these projects.”
The London Homelessness Awards are sponsored by the London Housing Foundation, Crisis, Shelter, the Mayor of London and the London Housing Directors.
To watch a film about the 2017 award winners and find out more details about how to enter this year’s awards, please go to www.lhawards.org.uk
Celebrating London-based projects that improve services to homeless people
The London Homelessness Awards are unique and recognise the creativity and imagination that agencies can bring to services for homeless people.
The awards are open to all projects in London working in the field of homelessness. This includes registered social landlords, local councils, London NHS and health related organisations, voluntary organisations, or a partnership of any of these. The only stipulation is that your project must have been operating and delivering services for a minimum of six months.