EXTRA SUPPORT: Dawn Ince inside Cangle Foyer’s new emergency accommodation.
Cangle Foyer in Cangle Road has converted a training room into an emergency bed space complete with ensuite and TV.
The room is to be used to provide people living on the streets with a place to go when they have nowhere else to turn and will be officially opened at the beginning of April.
“This emergency accommodation is for someone who is desperate,” said Dawn Ince, housing and support team leader at the hostel.
“It could help someone turn their life around.”
The hostel, which is run by Riverside Care and Support, is a supported housing centre for young people aged 16 to 25-years-old. It provides housing related support and additional services around substance abuse, mental health and relationships.
Planning permission was needed for the work to create the ‘crash pad’ and Mrs Ince, who has worked at the hostel for 8 years, said this was a lengthy process.
“It has taken a lot of years to get here because this is a listed building,” she said.
“Because of the nature of our business we do get a number of young people with nowhere to go and this will provide a temporary solution while we see what can be done.”
The emergency accommodation at the hostel, which has 32 other beds, will be made available to someone in need for a period of up to six nights.
During this time the Foyer’s support team will work with specialist partner agencies to identify appropriate support to help them out of homelessness.
“Six days gives us lots of time to get to know a person and give them the necessary support,” said Mrs Ince.
The ‘crash pad’ project was joint funded by Riverside and Suffolk County Council.
According to Homeless Link, nearly half of people living in homelessness services are aged between 16 and 24.
Riverside works with young people at The Cangle Foyer to identify support needs as well as training and employment opportunities.
The organisation offers an in-house job club as well as boasting links with Job Centre Plus, West Suffolk College and the Papworth Trust.
The centre hosts a programme of activities to help build self-esteem and enable young people to learn new skills ahead of independent living.