Social Impact Funding Helps to Increase Housing for Vulnerable Adults

Housing specialist, My Space, will considerably increase its services and support for vulnerable adults as it implements an action plan for substantial growth over the next three years.

The charity, a registered social landlord with the Homes and Communities Agency, operates primarily across the North West, providing housing solutions for individuals who would be unable to live independently otherwise. Since its inception in 2012, My Space has helped over 70 vulnerable adults into independent accommodation and is now looking to increase this to more than 500 by the end of 2017 with the help of a FSE Social Impact Accelerator loan.

The cost to the public purse associated with inappropriate accommodation for adults with additional needs, whether due to mental health issues, learning disabilities or drug abuse, is high; in many cases expensive care institutions or temporary bed & breakfasts are being used unnecessarily. My Space addresses this problem by enabling those individuals who are able, with some support, to live independently within the community, which in turn provides substantial cost savings to local authorities.

My Space Operations Director, Peter Lynch, says: “As well as offering accommodation that is suitably located and equipped for our clients’ individual needs, we also work with them, alongside social workers and other care providers, to help them cope with the demands of independent living. Our housing support officers assist with day to day matters such as setting up and managing utility bills, security and maintenance issues as well as general support and companionship, all of which contribute to a successful integration back into the local community.”

At present the charity has a waiting list of around 70 individuals who have been referred to them from statutory professionals via local social services departments and primary care trusts. Due to the high initial set up costs associated with finding and equipping the right properties, as well as increasing its infrastructure to match growth, My Space has sought external funding to equip the organisation to meet current and future demand.

The £500,000 FSE Social Impact Accelerator loan will be used to fund the upfront expenditure needed to secure and furnish the accommodation for new clients alongside a scaling up of the central and care teams to support the ongoing expansion.

Funded through initial investment from Big Society Capital and managed by The FSE Group, the FSE Social Impact Accelerator provides flexibly structured loans of between £200,000 and £1million to regulated social sector organisations.

Mark Bickford, Senior Fund Manager at The FSE Group comments: “My Space has a niche offering with a significant social impact, helping vulnerable individuals in a situation where others can’t or won’t. With evidence of strong demand, we know this funding will help My Space to build on its current success and foster the financial resilience needed to really expedite its growth.”

Nick O’Donohoe, CEO of Big Society Capital, said:

“When we made the cornerstone investment into the FSE Social Impact Accelerator fund, it was because we wanted to ensure a variety of finance is available to social sector organisations, particularly those who do not qualify for traditional secured lending. We are very pleased to see My Space using the fund to support the growth of their services over the next three years, helping more vulnerable adults live independently.”

For more information or to apply to the FSE Social Impact Accelerator, please contact Mark Bickford, Senior Fund Manager, mark.bickford@thefsegroup.com or visit the FSE website: www.thefsegroup.com/social-impact-funding/sia. For more information on FSE’s social investment and fund development activity, please contact Jeff Dober, Head of Social Impact Funds, jeff.dober@thefsegroup.com.

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Enquiries

My Space: Peter Lynch, Peter.Lynch@my-spacehousing.co.uk, 07824 145075.
The FSE Group: Tom Clarke, tom.clarke@thefsegroup.com, 01276 608513.
Big Society Capital: David Dinnage, ddinnage@bigsocietycapital.com, 020 7186 2540.

About My Space

My Space is a specialist housing association that provides individuals with a home that is suitable to their own specific needs. We aim to lead the way in exemplary social housing provision, providing for the individual support needs of all vulnerable adults that are housed with My Space. We seek to promote the human rights, independence and social responsibility of each individual. We want to significantly contribute to improving the quality of life for already disadvantaged and vulnerable people by responsibly housing and caring for each individual.

About FSE Social Impact Accelerator

The FSE Social Impact Accelerator Loan Scheme provides flexibly-structured loan finance of between £200,000 and £1,000,000 to ambitious regulated social sector organisations, including trading arms of charities, to support expansion strategies that will deliver a step-change in an organisation’s scale of impact and financial resilience.

With a focus on cash-flow and enterprise potential, rather than historic balance sheets or hard-asset security cover, the loan scheme support enterprises and opportunities beyond the reach of traditional lending criteria. It can provide standalone funding or act as a complementary source of subordinated capital alongside conventional lender support. www.thefsegroup.com/social-impact-funding/sia

About The FSE Group

The FSE Group provides tailored funding solutions and support for ambitious SMEs.  This includes direct loans and equity investments to SMEs and social enterprises that require funding to enable their growth, as well as mentoring, training and helping companies secure funding from private investors in our investor clubs.  Operating on a profit-for-purpose basis, the Group reinvests surpluses for the benefit of the communities it serves. All regulated activities are delivered through FSE Fund Managers Limited, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. The FSE Group is the umbrella brand of FSE C.I.C., a community interest company, and its subsidiaries. www.thefsegroup.com

About Big Society Capital

Big Society Capital is a financial institution with a social mission, set up to build the social investment market in the UK, so that charities and social enterprises can access appropriate repayable finance to enable them to grow, become more sustainable and increase their impact on society. It is doing this by building a diverse social investment market: encouraging investors to lend or invest money to achieve a social as well as a financial return.

Since it was set up as an independent organisation in 2012, Big Society Capital has committed over £165 million in investments to specialist organisations who lend to charities and social enterprises. Over five years Big Society Capital will be capitalised with approximately £600 million, from a combination of English dormant bank accounts and the four main UK high street banks. www.bigsocietycapital.com.