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Education: The Princes Trust Team Programme


The Princes Trust Team Programme is a 12-week personal development course, offering work experience, qualifications, practical skills, community projects and a residential week. The team usually comprises of young people who are not in education employment or training (NEET) and aged 16 to 25.


As part of this programme, hyh’s Education Service provided a 2 hour workshop looking at planning and preparing for living independently, the causes of youth homelessness and where to get support if there were any housing concerns, now or in the future.


Through fun and engaging activities, the session started by breaking down stereotypes of homelessness. The majority of young people hyh support are not rough sleepers, but are equally unstable and vulnerable. We looked at who would be defined as homeless and the extent of support available to them and then played a film created by hyh volunteer service users about their experiences of homelessness, discussing how some situations can be prevented with the right support.


After a short break, the session then moved to look at how to plan and be prepared to live independently depending on the circumstances of the team members. We discussed what skills, qualities and resources would be necessary to cope with living alone and plotted a timeline of the steps to moving out and into independent accommodation. Finally we explored the importance of financial responsibility by using giant fake money and budgets based on different incomes to spread the cost of maintaining accommodation over one month.


When asked what they learnt from the session, students commented:


Firstly, how to budget and also where to go if I was homeless.

There are loads of people out there to help me.

I think it has made people realise that living alone is not that easy!


The team leaders commented:


This was a very engaging session, especially considering the heat. Really good layout – moves fast, always provoking opinion and discussion.” (Joe Oxley, Team Leader)

Excellent session from Andrea. She was really approachable and knowledgeable. Andrea truly connected with the group.” (Makiya Bonner, Assistant Team Leader)


This session was delivered for 2 hours due to the flexibility within the programme. However, the sessions can run from 30 minutes to 2 hours and incorporate topics that the education provider feels are most important for their class/group.

The main aims of the sessions are to improve young people’s knowledge of when and where to access help and support when having problems at home and increase young people’s understanding of the realities of homelessness and leaving home. Through addressing these aims, the objective is to support the prevention of youth homelessness in Hertfordshire.