1 July 2020: Everyone should have an opportunity to have a place that they can call home

We welcome the Government’s announcement over the weekend to give improved access to social housing for members of the Armed Forces and veterans suffering from mental ill health but we need to be mindful that providing somewhere to live is only one very important element of a package of support that is often required.

Nicholas Harris

In May of last year, I was able to meet some of the veterans who are part of our community build scheme in Leominster and heard first-hand about a diverse range of issues they face on a daily basis. From struggles with substance abuse to mental and physical health conditions. It has been a complex but rewarding project that will bring 19 brand-new homes to the area for affordable rent with a proportion of the properties allocated exclusively for ex-service personnel.

Where this particular project differs is the opportunities we have been able to offer the veterans over the course of the build programme the opportunity to learn new skills that we hope will lead to future employment opportunities. This combined with the added sense of community already developed with fellow veterans who will, once the scheme is completed, become neighbours – this is all part of the type of support that ensures they will be able to live successful, independent lives once more. Together they will be creating a community that they can call home.