Last year, 121,000 16–24-year-olds were homeless or at risk of homelessness in the UK and the pandemic has placed many more young people at risk. That’s why Prologis has been a longstanding supporter of LandAid and why, for the second year running, we’re delighted to sponsor the charity’s Birmingham SleepOut to raise awareness of youth homelessness.

LandAid is the property industry’s charity, working to end youth homelessness in the UK. It brings the property industry together to support charities delivering life-changing services for young people who are or have been homeless, or who are at risk of homelessness in the future.

The charity’s first annual SleepOut took place in 2020, just before the pandemic, when six of our intrepid employees joined other property professionals from across the Midlands to sleep under the stars at Edgbaston cricket ground for one very cold, uncomfortable night.Last year, due to the pandemic, our intrepid team members had to get creative and find the most uncomfortable space to spend the night in and around their own homes. Some, like me, chose a tent in the back garden, others made rudimentary shelters or simply bedded down on the patio and braved the elements.

The most unusual location was chosen by Andrea Jenkinson from our finance team, who spent the night in the back on an old Land Rover Defender! Although she knew it would be cold, Andrea told me she hadn’t factored in that sleeping in a metal box would also cause condensation, so she also had to endure water dripping on her head.

This year’s SleepOut will be an in-person event and will take place on March 10th at various location around the UK (although you can still choose to ‘sleepout’ at home if you’d prefer). As always, there is fierce competition between regions to see who can raise the most money and we’d love property professional in the Midlands to join us and help us get to the top of the leaderboard as a region and raise money for a very worthwhile cause.

All funds raised at the Birmingham SleepOut will go towards supporting the St Basil’s Live & Work Village – Phase 2. The current Live and Work Village – Phase 1, provides accommodation for young workers for under £43 per week, inclusive of all bills. This scheme is open to 16-to-24-year-olds in the West Midlands who are employed –  and is particularly ideal for apprentices and those on a low income.

The scheme is totally Benefit Free, which means that young people get the opportunity to Live and Work without having to rely on welfare benefits.

The accommodation, home to 32 young people, comprises 8 flats. Each flat has 4 bedrooms, with shared kitchen, dining, and bathroom facilities. Progression Coaches offer a bespoke onsite service to the young people living here from Monday to Friday, as well as an additional on-call service should a young person need out of hours support.

Dave Ribbands, a Director in our Project Management Team, was one of the team members braving the elements last year to raise awareness of this issue. Here’s what he had to say about his experience:

“It wasn’t too bad until about 3am when the rain decided to make an appearance, which when combined with the wind was not a nice experience. In reality, I am fortunate that I had a good sleeping bag, plenty of fresh warm clothes and a secure garden to sleep in.

I can’t imagine having the feeling of knowing you have to do that every night. Last night wasn’t even particularly cold either, imagine when it was -4 in winter!”

 Why not brave the cold and help us ensure that no young person has to sleep on the streets? To find out more a register, click here