Charity workers and builders-for-good in Cambridge are teaming up to open six new modular homes for homeless people.
In a bid to sidestep high land and housing costs in the area, the custom-built supported living units are specifically designed so that they can be used on temporary sites which come in at a low cost.
The homes are arriving in just the nick of time as rough sleepers housed in hotels during the Covid-19 pandemic are currently set to leave their accommodation at the end of June and the need for new housing for them is urgent.
Each property was built by 13 young people at the New Meaning Foundation, a social enterprise training disadvantaged and formerly homeless people in construction. And each unit can be relocated within three years of the planning consent to ensure the project is kept affordable and sustainable.
Residents can stay in the homes – designed as self-contained flats each with a fitted kitchen, a living space, a bathroom, a washing machine and a bedroom – and will be supported on-site by local charity Jimmy’s. When the project moves location, residents can decide if they would like to stay in their home or move on to permanent housing.
Mark Allan, Jimmy’s chief executive, said: “One of the main challenges facing people who are homeless is finding affordable accommodation together with the support to help deal with the causes of what led them to sleeping rough on the streets in the first place. This project offers both.