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£1m donated to tackle youth homelessness

More than £1m has been donated to an award-winning scheme to help tackle homelessness among young people in London.

The Money House scheme is run by the charity MyBnk and teaches young people how to manage their tenancy and finances.

After completing The Money House, fewer than 1% of participants go on to be evicted and are three times less likely than their peers to have unsustainable rent arrears. According to the charity, it has helped nearly 4,000 16-25-year-olds avoid eviction in the London boroughs of Greenwich, Newham, Westminster and Haringey.

The donation was made by property developers Berkeley through its charity arm the Berkeley Foundation, which helps young people in London, Birmingham and the South of England overcome barriers and improve their lives. Since it was founded in 2011, the Foundation has donated more than £6m to charities tackling homelessness.

The news comes as the capital battles a surge in youth homelessness in recent years. A study by Centrepoint found that the number of young people on the street had increased by 40% between 2016 and 2020.

Guy Rigden, CEO of MyBnk, said:

Working with young people who can’t afford mistakes, as they prepare to live independently, is crucial. Thanks to Berkeley Foundation’s continued support MyBnk can ensure this transition is positive, helping young people with skills and knowledge, building their confidence to thrive in the future.

Sally Dickinson, Head of the Berkeley Foundation, said:

Sadly, care leavers face a higher risk of unemployment and homelessness and are more likely to come into contact with the criminal justice system than their peers. We are proud and excited to continue our partnership with MyBnk as it expands across the country and reaches more young people.