Shelter has today (13th March) announced a new partnership with social enterprise Beam.
As part of the announced partnership, the homelessness and housing charity will refer clients from its London services to the new online platform.
Once homeless people have been referred by Shelter, Beam will crowdfund employment training for them from the public at www.beam.org – then support them into skilled work.
Homeless people raising funds on Beam have their own campaign, with a story and an individual employment plan.
Each crowdfunding campaign is also said to have a transparent budget, breaking down the costs of the homeless person getting into work to the nearest pound.
The enterprise has already seen results, with reports that the platform has already been used by those homeless to train and get into a variety of skilled work – from being an electrician to crane rigging to lorry driving.
As part of the scheme, the public can give to a specific campaign but most of the funding is said to be split between all the campaigns equally.
As the homeless individuals progress through training and into work, they also provide updates to the people who have funded them.
Beam also recently won a London Homelessness Award and an award for ‘Best use of Technology in the Homelessness Sector’ from the homeless sector’s trade body, Homeless Link.
Ben Tovey, hub manager at Shelter said, “We’re so pleased to announce that Shelter is going to be a key referral partner in selecting new members going forward.
“Francesca, one of our resilience workers, recently made our first referral and we’re excited to see where this goes.”
Francesca Cook, resilience worker at Shelter added: “Beam has been amazing. I sent a referral a few weeks ago and they were very quick to contact my client and get her on board.
“They have kept me updated throughout the process and hope to get funding for my client in either garden design or pastoral care. I will certainly refer future clients to Beam.”
Alex Stephany, Beam’s CEO, said, “Beam is about using technology to allow the public to make a real, measurable difference by helping a homeless person for the long-term.
“We’re hugely excited to partner with the experts at Shelter to bring Beam’s benefits to even more homeless people.”