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If you have room to spare in your home and you would like to have a positive impact on a young person's life the Neighbourhoods Supported Lodgings Scheme would like to hear from you. It offers a rewarding opportunity to 'host' households - with training, advice, plus financial support.
If this sounds like you and you'd like to join the scheme please contact us.
Supported lodgings provide a stable environment for young people who have become homeless, to develop the practical skills and emotional stability they will need to make the transition to adulthood - whilst still having the support from an interested adult.
Supported Lodgings 'Hosts' rent a room in their home to a young person (aged 16 to 20) and give them the support, encouragement and guidance to develop the practical skills and confidence to live independently. The young person renting the room becomes part of the household and shares the facilities.
Hosts do not have parental responsibility for, or charge and control of the young person. However, Hosts are expected to take an interest in the young person's welfare and progress, reporting any concerns to the young person's Support Worker or Neighbourhoods Co-ordinator.
We need people from all walks of life and from all kinds of cultural and ethnic backgrounds to become providers. The young people come from diverse backgrounds and it is important that this is reflected in the lodgings that are available.
Being a Neighbourhoods Host does not require you to have certain qualifications. What is important is having an interest in young people and having the skills and qualities to support them to reach their potential.
- A spare room
- An understanding and respect for young people
- An ability to interact with young people fairly, honestly, openly and objectively
- A calm, relaxed and friendly attitude
- A good sense of humour
- An ability to work with other professionals as part of a team
- To be able to keep information concerning a young person confidential
- To believe in equalities of opportunity, regardless of difference
- To be committed to ongoing training and development
Supporting young people in this way can be exciting and rewarding. There is also a payment for your services.
If you would like to help the scheme we would really like to hear from you. Please contact us.
This will depend on the needs and abilities of each young person and how quickly they develop their independent living skills while living in Supported lodgings.
- For some this may be a few months, while others will require support for longer.
- The maximum period a young person can stay with a Supported Lodgings Host is two years.
- The scheme requires 28 days notice if either you as Host or the young person want to end the arrangement.
It should form part of a planned route for a young person toward independent living. We aim to ensure that moving on from Supported Lodgings is a positive and planned process.
Supporting young people in this way is an exciting and rewarding experience. We will also pay you for your services.
- In return for providing accommodation and support to a young person, we will pay an allowance of around £155 each week.
- The young person will also make a weekly contribution of around £15.00 to help them get used to budgeting, giving a total of £170.
- This £170 payment includes rent, fuel and three meals a day, one of which is a cooked meal. e.g. the young person may help themselves to breakfast and lunch, but eat an evening meal with you.
- Throughout their time with Neighbourhoods Supported Lodgings Scheme we hope the young person's cooking and budgeting skills will develop to a level where they can shop and cook for themselves. In this case, total payment would be proportionately decreased.
Will I have to pay tax?
- Hosts do not pay tax on the income they earn through supported lodgings.
- When a young person is placed with you, you must inform the Inland Revenue and explain what you are doing. You need to tell them that supported lodgings come under the same rules as fostering, and the allowance for Bristol foster carers is £10,000 a year. You must do this within three months of a young person being placed.
- Please contact the scheme coordinator with any further questions.
If I am on benefits will payments affect my eligibility?
If you are receiving benefits, payment for Supported Lodgings must be declared and could be taken into account as income and therefore effect your eligibility. It is advisable to check with the relevant benefits office.
We advise that you inform your mortgage lender if you are a home owner, or your landlord if you are tenant.
In addition to the financial package, you will also be given regular training and support to help you learn about and deal with some of the issues facing young people.
Neighbourhoods Supported Lodgings Scheme believe that professional training and support must be made available to Hosts if they are to carry out their role and develop their skills. Whilst preparing to host you will be required to complete initial training as part of the Assessment Process. This will cover areas such as young people’s issues, confidentiality and working in partnership, as well as provide information on the legal aspects of becoming a Host. In adddition:
- The Neighbourhoods Co-ordinator is responsible for supporting Hosts and will help you to identify and address your support and training needs. The Co-ordinator will meet with you on a monthly basis when a young person is living with you.
- The young person will also have support from a Support Worker, helping you carry out your Supported Lodging role.
- It can also be helpful to share any difficulties or problems with other Hosts who may be able to offer support. We will invite you to be on a shared list of providers so you can contact each other for advice and support when you need it.
- We will also pay for you to be a member of Foster Talk - an online and telephone support service for Foster Carers and Supported Lodgings Hosts
We have a duty to make sure that all Neighbourhoods Supported Lodgings Hosts can offer young people a safe and supportive environment. The assessment process will ensure that you are committed to providing support and guidance which is of the highest quality.
When you contact us to say you would like to join the Neighbourhoods Supported Lodgings Scheme as a Host, the Neighbourhoods Co-ordinator will arrange a home visit to you and any other members of your household in order to fill out an assessment form. We will ask for information about the following:
- You, the others in your household and your home
- Any skills or experience you may have of working with teenagers
- What your expectations of a young person would be
- What you would be prepared to offer a young person
This is also an opportunity for you to ask any questions.
The assessment will normally take three visits to complete. Approved Hosts will be asked to sign a Partnership Agreement which sets out expectations on both parts.
Supported Lodgings is a housing option for 16 to 20 year olds who cannot live at home but are not ready to live completely independently.
Many young people who are unable to live at home at this age find themselves needing some help and advice. There are different housing options for young people depending on needs. Some young people need to be looked after by the local authority whilst others are housed in youth hostels or shared housing where staff are available during the day.
How can Supported Lodgings help you?
Sometimes young people need a break from their own families before they start to rebuild relationships. Supported Lodgings will give you the space to do this in a safe, secure environment where you can get support from your Host and Support Worker.
You will be a member of the household and you will have your own front door key. The Host is not responsible for you in the same way as a parent would be. Your Host is there to support and encourage your independence. There will be house rules which will be discussed during the placement agreement. These rules will need to be kept to and you will be asked to sign a written agreement.
You will meet with your Support Worker weekly to start with. Every three months you will meet with your Host, Support Worker and the Supported Lodgings coordinator to ensure that all your needs are being met in your support plan, identify what you need to work on and what you've achieved so far.