Champions Court receives highly commended at awards
published on 21 Jul 2023
St Helens homeless project highly commended in prestigious local authority awards
A supported housing project for people moving on from homelessness has been recognised at a prestigious awards ceremony for local authorities across the UK.
The Salvation Army’s Champions Court housing complex, in partnership with St Helens Borough Council and national housing association Torus, which supports former homeless people in the next step to rebuilding their lives and their journey out of homelessness, was awarded Highly Commended in the Best Social Housing Initiative category at the MJ Awards.
The category recognised projects that were focused on finding long term accommodation for homeless people during the pandemic, with Champions Court welcoming its first residents in 2021. The project was also recognised for helping people to tackle the underlying issues that lead people to sleep rough - support which The Salvation Army provides through specialist onsite and 24-hour care.
Robert Long, regional manager for The Salvation Army’s Homelessness Services Unit in the North West said: “It’s fantastic to be recognised at a high-profile awards ceremony for such a specialised category. The highly commended accreditation is testament to the hard work and dedication that St Helens Council, Torus and The Salvation Army have put into providing opportunities and specialised support to individuals who often have very complex needs.”
Champions Court in Appleton Road was redeveloped by housing provider Torus Housing, supported by St Helens Council and funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government’s Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme.
Rob added: “Champions Court and this award recognition is proof that the supported housing model and redevelopment of the apartment blocks was a worthwhile project. Organisations coming together with a passion for the same cause to make it a reality generates fantastic results, ultimately giving people an opportunity to further rebuild their lives.”
The two apartment blocks feature 28 individual flats providing housing needs for people moving on from The Salvation Army’s Salisbury House Lifehouse, which provides supported accommodation for up to 64 homeless men and women, and the YMCA St Helens Hostel.
The 24-hour support provided to residents by The Salvation Army includes helping them to overcome the complex reasons for their homelessness, like mental ill health, fleeing domestic violence, relationship breakdown, childhood trauma or addiction.