- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Assembly Member Joyce Watson this week (23 October) visited a Llanelli project providing accommodation, support and advice to homeless young people.
The self-contained flats at Clos Sant Paul are run by Welsh homelessness charity The Wallich. As well as a temporary home, the project offers young people (16 to 25 years old) 24-hour support including family mediation, help with benefits claims and employment and training advice.
The Labour member for Mid and West Wales was given a tour of the facility by Sian David, The charity’s Head of Participation and Progression. Mrs Watson spoke with staff and residents about the importance of having a safe, stable and supportive environment in which homeless young people can develop the self-esteem, confidence and skills they need to live independently.
Joyce Watson AM said:
“I’d like to thank Sian, the team and the young residents, for taking the time to show me around Clos Sant Paul and share with me their experiences of coping with homelessness.
“Having a roof overhead, a safe place to live, is a precondition of a stable life, one many of us take for granted.
“The Wallich does fantastic work, supporting around 5000 people every year – projects like Llanelli’s Clos Sant Paul give young people the sanctuary and support they need to build a happy and fulfilling life.”
Mrs Watson’s visit was arranged before the Welsh Government announced its draft Budget for 2018-19. After seven years of cuts, the pot of money handed down from Westminster to Wales is £1.2 billion smaller – homelessness charities were concerned about budget cuts. However, the Welsh Government protected funding for the Supporting People programme, money that supports housing-related services throughout Wales, including Clos Sant Paul.
Sian David added:
“For some people, homelessness can be a revolving door. However, at The Wallich, we provide people with a roof over their head and specialist support that helps people back onto their feet.
“Our dedicated and hard-working staff in our Llanelli project, work with young people – many of whom have complex needs – so they feel able to cope with the challenges of living independently and, hopefully, break the cycle of homelessness. Empowering homeless young people through activities that improve their skills, confidence and independence enables inclusion and the chance to integrate back into the community.”
For more information about Clos Sant Paul, or to request referral information, please contact: The Wallich, 75 Clos Sant Paul, Llanelli, SA15 1GZ / 01554 780259.