Michael Tomlinson MP took time out of his busy schedule last week to visit Waverley House in Wimborne, which provides accommodation for vulnerable young people within his constituency of Mid Dorset and North Poole.
The service for 16 – 21 year-olds is run by BCHA, a local specialist housing and support provider, who help homeless and vulnerable people access the right housing, health, learning and work opportunities.
The visit followed a meeting earlier this year between BCHA CEO, Martin Hancock and Michael, when he was also a member of the Public Bill Committee for the Homelessness Reduction Act. The new law, which was given Royal Assent in April, will require earlier intervention by councils to prevent homelessness, becoming the first major piece of homelessness legislation for 15 years.
Michael met with staff to find out more about the work of BCHA and Waverley House in supporting the 8 young people who live there and also spoke with resident’s Ella, 18, Joe, 22, about their own experiences and future plans. The MP also talked to Grace Butler, a local a police Community Support Officer, about successful partnership working with BCHA has led to some very positive outcomes within the community.
Michael Tomlinson, said, “I was delighted to be invited to visit Waverley House to see for myself the excellent work that they are doing. It is clear that the young people who use this facility benefit significantly as a result. The dedication and skill of the staff at BCHA is to be applauded.”
Following the visit, Lisa Hudson, BCHA Project Leader for Dorset Young People’s Services, said, “We really appreciate Michael taking time to come and visit us, it really meant a lot to both staff and residents. He took time to talk to everyone individually and find out more about them and find out what more the government can do to help. The feedback from everyone following the visit has been extremely positive.”