Helping young families get the support they need

The Quay Foyer in Poole, Dorset, provides young families facing homelessness with temporary accommodation and support, to get them back on their feet. Natalia Kerr, a Senior Coach at the foyer, has worked in supported housing for a number of years and here, she explains what she enjoys most about her job.

Natalia Kerr

At the foyer we are invited to contribute any ideas we have regarding any improvements or suggestions for any of the foyer’s policies and procedures at any time. This openness makes our staff feel empowered and knowledgeable about how to provide the most effective care and encourages us to bounce ideas as a team to ensure we are always delivering the best support to all of our customers.

I’ve always wanted to make a difference, but I never imagined I would ever get to work in a job that allowed me to make an impact every single working day. For me, there is no better reward than helping a young individual or family to reach their goals and feel as though they can manage independently of our support.

In fact, I once worked with a customer at the foyer who moved into the building with her very sick husband and young son. In addition to being made homeless, this woman was carrying the weight of her family on her shoulders and couldn’t cope by herself any longer.

I spent a lot of time talking her through her options and making all three members of the family feel comfortable and at ease in the foyer. We tailored the support around the needs of the family and implemented several strength-building approaches to help them reconnect.

When the family received the keys to their new home, it was a delight to sit with her on their final day at the foyer and hear how she felt about her experience. Not only was she pleased with the service provided by the whole team, but she felt like we’d given her the tools to help her rebuild her life and keep it intact. It means a lot to me that I’m able to help change the lives of people, like this family’s, for the better.

In addition to providing emergency accommodation for young families referred by the Borough of Poole, the Quay Foyer provides accommodation, personal support and access to training and employment opportunities for young people aged 16-30.

Applications for accommodation for anyone between the ages of 16-30 can be made via Poole Borough Council's Housing Advisors or by contacting the Quay Foyer directly on 01202 463 603 or

For any referrals for the young families service then please contact the borough of Poole housing advisors first.