Scottish Housing Day was celebrated across East Ayrshire with fun events which helped to raise awareness of developments in housing and the housing options open to people locally.
In Darvel, pupils from Darvel Primary joined some of our oldest residents to share ideas about current and future housing developments. While at Afton Court Supported Accommodation pupils from Primary 4 at New Cumnock Primary joined the residents for a chat, games and some delicious cakes.
At Whatriggs Supported Accommodation in Kilmarnock a roast chicken dinner with all the trimmings was a fitting way to mark the day.
The Whatriggs project is a unique partnership between the Council’s Housing and Communities, Social Work Services and the Blue Triangle. It is home to six young care leavers, aged 16 to 25 years, and supports their transition to their own tenancy.
Vibrant Communities have used their knowledge and experience to develop a special befriending service for the young people. Befriendees visit the young people and have been teaching them how to cook. One of the befrienders taught the young people how to prepare a roast chicken and even made their own chicken gravy from scratch.
By learning to cook the young people learn essential skills and it also helps their confidence and self-esteem.
Councillor Elena Whitham, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities said: “East Ayrshire Council was delighted to support Scottish Housing Day. It helps to encourage people to think about their housing options and this year there was a particular focus on young people, the challenges they face and their aspirations.
“Young and old people joined together at special events to talk about housing options and what housing, and most importantly a home, means to them. At Whatriggs Supported Accommodation the young people demonstrated their cooking skills and enjoyed a home cooked meal together.
“The Whatriggs Supported Accommodation project is unique in Scotland. The team behind the project recognised that many young people leaving care experienced difficulty reintegrating into their local community. They acted quickly to develop this innovative transitional housing support service model.
“And the benefits are already evident. The project has been a true partnership and has involved all our Community Planning Partners. Support has been provided by Ayrshire College, Police Scotland, Who Cares Scotland, the Council’s Active Schools team, Northwest Amateur Boxing Club, East Ayrshire Tenants and Residents Federation, the Wise Group and WG13.
“All our partners recognise that housing is essential for the wellbeing of our residents and understand that it is much more than just a roof over someone’s head. A home is somewhere to feel safe and secure.
“Whatriggs Supported Accommodation is the perfect place to create a positive environment and help our young people successfully move from a care setting to their own tenancy.”