Scheme could be expanded

A MORPETH emergency housing scheme has proved such a success that it may be replicated across Northumberland.

Barnabas Safe and Sound launched its Safe Space Crash Pad project last year in partnership with Northumberland County Council.

The initiative provides a short-term safe place to stay for young people in housing crisis until a more permanent solution can be found.

In its first year 18 people took advantage of the scheme, and it has been rated so highly that the council has agreed to extend the Barnabas partnership for another year.

In addition, the idea will be tried in other communities, with an Alnwick youth group among those interested in taking it on.

Barnabas Chief Executive Chris Menzies said: “It has made a big difference both to us and the council having emergency accommodation as an option to consider and we hope it can be replicated in other parts of the county.

“It buys a bit of time in giving people somewhere safe to stay while the agencies can identify their support needs and find longer-term accommodation.

“Hopefully, it is keeping people off the streets.”