Empty Leeds houses rejuvenated

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A NEW partnership is set to transform derelict properties into new homes to help young people facing homelessness in Leeds.

Empty houses in Holbeck will be renovated and brought back into use by their new tenants through the combined efforts of property industry charity LandAid, Canopy Housing and housing company Palmer Capital.

Steve Hoey, director of Canopy Housing, said: “As a result of joint funding, we will enable a young person to renovate a long-term empty property to create a quality, affordable home for themselves.

“They will not only gain a home and support, but also skills and help moving towards work and stability in life.”

Future tenants will participate in painting, decorating and furnishing their new homes - a self-help principle which ensures the young people feel a sense of ownership and learn practical skills. Young couple David and Charlotte were forced to stay with friends and relatives while expecting their first child.

David said: ”It’s bad because you don’t know where you are going to be putting your head down, eating or anything. You need somewhere stable, especially when you are having a kid.”

Thanks to the project, the pair and baby Maddy are now living together in a new home.

Palmer Capital is supporting LandAid with £80,000 in funding..

Chief executive Alex Price said: “We have been a firm supporter of LandAid for many years and are delighted to have hit our fundraising target of £30,000.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome, which will have a significant impact on the lives of young people at risk of homelessness in Leeds.”