Your Own Place is an award-winning social enterprise delivering Money, Housing, Tenancy and Cost of Living support to prevent homelessness
We meet people where they are already seeking support: in community centres, warm spaces, and food banks and social supermarkets, known as foodhubs. We know that here, people are more likely to engage further with us, and then with other services.
People we support say they feel comfortable to share with us, and realise they are not alone in their worries.
95% feel more confident after a workshop
Why food banks?
More and more people are accessing food banks for the first time — not knowing what help is available or that they’re entitled to it.
We work through cost of living & other money challenges and direct people to more specialist help so that people learn what support is available, and leave with the knowledge and confidence to access this support.
People tell us that we helped them reveal skills and strengths they didn’t know they had.
What we do
We create safe, non-judgemental spaces to have financial conversations, more in-depth 1-2-1s and small group workshops.
We use a flexible approach drawing on a variety of activities and topics, so that we can tailor content to the people in a group workshop or the person we are working with one-to-one.
Trainees tell us how after working with us, they set themselves financial and life goals, and get the help to achieve them.
100% say they would recommend our workshops
Why relationships first
Everything Your Own Place does starts with values, relationships, quality, impact and trust.
We meet people where they are already seeking support: in community centres, warm spaces, and food banks and social supermarkets, known as foodhubs.
We create safe, non-judgemental spaces to be open and have financial conversations.
Your Own Place listens from a place of equity and empathy to people’s lived experience and creates a safe environment so that people feel safe and valued in our workshops, benefit from being with their peers and feel comfortable and empowered to share their knowledge with others in their community.
People, as a group, help us to help each other.
Our why for working in food banks
More and more people are accessing food banks. The Trussell Trust gave out 3 million food parcels in 22/23 — many to families with children.
By focusing on the money skills and knowledge already in the room, we remove the barrier of stigma often attached to food banks so that those who are struggling avoid debt, rent arrears, evictions and homelessness.
Our restorative, participative, coaching and asset-based facilitation draws out and emphasises the shared knowledge and resilience of the community. People without a safety net leave with the ability to create their own.
We empower trainees to draw on their existing skills to navigate their financial and housing situations so that they leave with a legacy of being able to tackle their future problems too – these are not simply life skills, but skills for life.
What we do in more detail
Our approach is flexible, and we draw on a bank of various activities and topics. Our content is tailored to the people we are working with.
A bespoke, secure and asset-based referral/self-referral pathway enables us to capture and adapt to a variety of neuro-divergent needs. People tell us that we are approachable, and that we break information down to make it accessible.
We take the time to build relationships with volunteers, workers and people attending the food bank so that our engagement and referral pathway — including spending time in the food hubs and a comprehensive marketing campaign — reaches as many people as possible. Nothing happens without trust.
Our 1-2-1 sessions are scheduled meet ups with people which take place at food banks, community spaces and local cafes. Several people choose to have follow up 1-2-1s to either cover a different topic or to discuss actions they had set themselves from their first session.
We run workshops with groups of between 3 and 8 people. Once someone has attended one, they’re more likely to come along to another. There’s huge value in getting people to share with each other, including generating confidence and motivation.
Norwich Foodbank speak very highly of their involvement with Your Own Place. “They put those with lived experience at the very centre of all they do and are extremely professional in their approach. Through conversations and peer-to-peer workshops at the food bank they’ve been able to hear and support discussions around the issues people are facing and are very skilled at building relationships and engaging with people“
Jo Stevenson, Area Manager, Norfolk and Suffolk, The Trussell Trust
What we’re doing now
We’re currently working across multiple food banks and food hubs in Norfolk, having successfully co-produced the offer within Norwich.
Being present and available at the same time each week allows people to see us as part of the community, and come and ask any questions.
As we listened to people visiting food banks, often with the aim of resolving their immediate need, we realised the importance of conversations in the moment. We created a reliable, consistent and respectful way to have conversations with people seeking emergency food. We’ll continue to develop and expand this method of engaging in our next phase of work across food hubs.
This work is currently supported by Norfolk County Council, Multiply (Funded by UK Government), Saffron Housing Trust Limited and Places for People.
If you’d like to support us to support you with our work in food banks and hubs, get in touch via the Contact Us page.
Read our recent Foodbank project report
Read our case study about Miles, who attended our community workshops within a foodbank
‘A bit of feedback from a tenant that attended one of the workshops: ‘I want to thank everyone who organised the course because it has made a significant difference to me.’ As we have often said, we will never know fully the impact that these sessions will have on individuals — but this demonstrates their value’.
Our Mission is to prevent homelessness
Our Vision is that everyone has a safe and secure home
Get in Touch:
Please email or use the contact form to get in touch:
Tel: 01603 611910
23 Johnson Place
©Your Own Place CIC. We are registered in England and Wales. Company number 08751344. All our profits go to back into the business and in supporting the Your Own Place Advisory Board (YOPAB)