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Issue 110: April 2018

Editorial: A place to call home

The housing crisis is now affecting all parts of the UK and Wales, as recent increases in homelessness and rough sleeping make all too clear.

However, the crisis is particularly acute for young people. Add unaffordable house prices and rents to insecure private tenancies and a shortage of social housing, then mix in welfare reform and a breakdown of social networks and it’s little wonder that the housing system is showing so many signs of strain.

The special feature in this Spring issue of WHQ kicks off with Hugh Russell’s report on progress in the campaign to End Youth Homelessness Cymru. We also look at what’s happening elsewhere in the world in Tamsin Stirling’s account of her study visit to the United States and Canada. As one speaker in Los Angeles puts it: ‘You can’t end homelessness without ending youth homelessness.’

But what do young people want themselves from their housing? A place to call my own and somewhere safe to live were the overwhelming answers from the Wake up to the Changes project but, as Sam Austin and Samantha Howells report, there is also a disconnect between what housing professionals think and what young people feel.

We also report on a range of innovative solutions developed across Wales by housing associations, local authorities and the voluntary sector.

The message from Bron Afon’s Own 2 Feet…Living project is that young people are the key to the solution. Lisa Charles explains more about the youth-led scheme that aims to support young people into independence.

Meanwhile Sadie O’Connor says seeing things from young people’s point of view was the key to Caerphilly improving its housing and homelessness provision for them.

But we also have more about the Rooms4U pilot of shared housing and what landlords are doing in the community and in schools to give young people more opportunities.

The other major feature in this issue sees WHQ interview housing and regeneration minister Rebecca Evans. She talks about her agenda across a wide range of different issues and gives readers some clues on changes to come.

We also focus on changes in housing association governance, with a look at the vision developed by the Regulatory Board and the new code launched for consultation by Community Housing Cymru.

WHQ is published just before TAI 2018. We include a sneak preview of some of the sessions plus a full guide to the conference that runs from April 24 to 26. I hope to see you there.

Jules Birch, Editor, WHQ








This issue of WHQ is kindly sponsored by Kier Living

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