YMCA
Open Door

YMCA Black Country Group welcomes Lord-Lieutenant Mr John Crabtree OBE to explore YMCA Open Door

Lord-Lieutenant Mr John Crabtree OBE, of the West Midlands, visited YMCA Black Country Group along with Ian Austin MP, to find out more about the Supported Lodgings and Emergency Accommodation Service, YMCA Open Door.

Since 2009, YMCA Open door provides housing to young people aged 16-25 in the homes of trained and approved volunteer Hosts, across the Black Country.

During the visit, the Lord-Lieutenant spent time speaking to the staff, co-ordinators and service users to discuss YMCA Open Door and reflected on how the project has impacted the lives of young people throughout the Black Country.

Whilst young people are in the placement, they are supported by their Host and Project Worker to gain the skills they need to live independently. The relationship built between the Hosts and young people can be life changing, with many going on to form life lasting bonds and support networks.

Lord-Lieutenant Mr John Crabtree OBE said: “I had a very enjoyable visit to YMCA in West Bromwich (recently) but more to the point, I learned so much about the tremendous work they are undertaking. I heard first-hand from a young person in Supported Lodgings how YMCA’s support had made such an extraordinary contribution to their general wellbeing but also provided a real sense of purpose and direction in their lives. It was a truly heart-warming morning and I came away determined to find ways of helping the organisation to expand and develop their work – so critical at a time of continuing challenges to Local Authority budgets”.

Sally Cowan, Chief Housing Officer said: “Supported Lodgings achieves amazing results for the young people that access support whilst also harnessing the capabilities of the community. It provides an alternative to Supported Housing and is a cost effective solution to meeting the needs of vulnerable young people.”

For more information about YMCA Open Door contact Rachael Taylor, Project Manager on 0121 5241950, Rachael.taylor@ymcabc.org.uk or visit www.ymcabc.org.uk.

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Volunteer Communications and Audio Visual Media Students

YMCA Open Door Project as and when required | Various Locations throughout the Black Country FIND OUT MORE


Volunteer Drivers – YMCA Open Door Project

As and when required | Various Locations throughout the Black Country

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Open Door Host Appreciation Awards 2017

Friday 28th April saw more than 45 Hosts from our Open Door Project attend Walsall Council Chambers to be presented with awards to say thank you for their hard work and dedication to the young people they have taken into their homes.

The Mayor of Walsall presented the Hosts with their awards after project workers read out comments from the team and from some of the young people they had hosted.

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Open Door’s Intu Host Appreciation Evening

intu-merry-hill-logoWe are very excited to announce that our Open Door project will be holding a Host Appreciation Evening on Friday 28 April at Walsall Council Chambers.

The Open Door project supports vulnerable teenagers by placing them with volunteer host families in the community. Operating across the Black Country, it is the largest Supported Lodgings and Nightstop scheme in the country. Last year, Open Door’s Host families provided almost 20,000 bed nights. FIND OUT MORE


More than 250,000 homeless in England

donate-button-mediumA damning report compiled by Shelter has revealed that there are more than a quarter of a million people in England are homeless.

Using data from four sets of official 2016 statistics, Shelter has compiled what they have described as a “conservative” total, adjusting down to account for any overlaps between the groups, and not offering estimates where no figures are available.

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Councillors to spend Christmas in a box

Two Dudley Councillors will be spending Christmas Eve sleeping rough to raise awareness of youth homelessness in Dudley and money for YMCA Black Country Group!

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Urgent need for Hosts in Walsall

YMCA Black Country Group are now half way through their campaign to recruit “25 Hosts in 25 Weeks” in order to meet the growing demand for accommodation in Walsall, but are still looking for more people to come forward in the run up to Christmas.

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Vote for Local Young Star to win National YMCA Award

Local young hero Zubairi Sentongo from YMCA Black Country Group has been shortlisted to receive the Young Achiever of the Year Award in this year’s prestigious YMCA Youth Matters Awards. Residents are now being encouraged to get behind Zubairi, 19, and help him reach the final stage of the judging process in an exciting online vote.  FIND OUT MORE


YMCA Launches Campaign to Recruit Caring Hosts

YMCA Black Country Group aims to recruit “25 Hosts over 25 Weeks” in a campaign to provide more accommodation for homeless teenagers across the Black Country.

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