New Cospa project Something Constructive launched in Liverpool

Friday 10th October 2014

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A new community regeneration project, developed together by Cospa and national youth organisation Ambition and focused on the refurbishment of ten empty, derelict homes, has been launched in Liverpool in partnership with Granby 4 Streets Community Land Trust.

The new initiative, called Something Constructive, gives local young people aged 16-24 the chance to learn vocational building and construction skills on the job whilst volunteering to help repair long-term empty properties for return to use as affordable social housing.

Young people will be mentored by local professional tradespeople, who will also be volunteering their time, and will be supported in working towards achieving a City & Guilds qualification over the course of the project. Graduates of the scheme will also gain access to further training, work placements and apprenticeships with local employers beyond the project.

In the process, ownership of the ten properties is being transferred from Liverpool City Council, through the council’s Homes for £1 scheme, to Granby 4 Streets Community Land Trust, whose aim is to reverse the long-term dereliction of Victorian terraced houses and the associated degeneration of communities in Toxteth.

The Something Constructive initiative is being principally funded by the Department of Communities and Local Government, through the Empty Properties Community Grants Programme, with additional support from the Nationwide Foundation.

Helen Marshall, Chief Executive at Ambition, comments: “Strengthening communities and developing young people’s skills is at the heart of this new project, which seeks to find an innovative solution to the prevalence of empty homes – more than 114,00 – and high youth unemployment in the North West.”

Work on the ten derelict Victorian properties in Toxteth will start in November and is due to take eight months to complete.