Change Please

Shortlisted Candidate in EMEA

A jobs-first approach to homelessness

Change Please trains homeless people to be Baristas. In partnership with the Big Issue we provide a London Living Wage job, housing support and a fast track bank account sponsored by Barclays bank. We were invited by Richard Branson to Necker Island which has led to a contract with Microsoft.

The Problem

Homelessness has doubled since 2010 (source:Crisis). Over 6000 people are sleeping on the streets in the UK at any one time and the problem is worsening. This is due to a variety of reasons including; economic downturn, bedroom tax, universal credit, reduction in council housing, lack of new building and housing benefit changes. In addition to this, there are also very high levels of unemployment and underemployment among people who are homeless according to Crisis.

The Solution

We believe that people who are homeless have a huge amount of skills, experience and qualities to offer the world. These are underused and homeless people are often restricted from life opportunities as a result of their situation. Unemployment is too high and we want to tackle this. 

We believe in a 'jobs-first' approach to tackling homelessness as economic independence provides people with the ability to acquire secure accommodation and the other support they may require. 

Our solution to homelessness is to provide sustainable employment opportunities to homeless people. There are few barriers to working with us; after completing a training course, our workers are able to secure sustainable employment and the other support that they need.