Good accommodation, affordable prices, a settled way of life
Target was set up to provide decent accommodation and support for offenders at a time when many were ending up in poor quality, expensive private sector accommodation. We were the first organisation of this kind in Sheffield and started with a £600 loan from a local charity, the Grace Tebbutt Trust. South Yorkshire Probation Service provided our offices, referrals and payroll services, and we managed properties owned by South Yorkshire Housing Association which also gave us generous financial backing.
We had 21 beds and operated out of the Probation Service offices at West Bar. Most of our residents were 18-25 year old men.
The Company was incorporated as a private limited company on 8 February 1993. Our remit was extended to temporarily accommodate and support any single homeless person ‘in need, hardship or distress’ wishing to live in Sheffield and who had suffered a legal restriction on their liberty.
In our first full year as a registered charity and limited company, we had 11 staff and managed 30 properties. However, after the maximum two years with the project service users often ended up back on the streets. We started to consider move-on accommodation.
We started to house and support asylum seekers in partnership with Safe Haven. Within a year we had doubled the number of asylum seekers with whom we were working.
We set up our High Intensity Support Service to provide in-depth support for those identified by probation to be either a high risk to themselves or to the public and at high risk of offending. Target was the only provider of this work in Sheffield.
1 April 2003 was dubbed ‘Supporting People day’. This is when the government programme for funding, planning and monitoring housing related support services was introduced.
After a glowing review from Supporting People, Target became the first organisation in the city commissioned for a high risk offender service.
In April, Target set up the Private Rented Solutions Project with Sheffield Council to house homeless and vulnerable families and single people in private rented tenancies. Target provided tenancy resettlement support. In less than a year 100 new supported tenancies had been established.
On Monday 25 June 2007 Target’s office was flooded. Most of the fixtures and fittings were destroyed, and most of our records and computer equipment were lost. We were relocated to and maintained business as usual.
Target started looking to own its own property. In March we changed our Objects to enable us to work outside Sheffield.
A New Dawn
The era of procurement began, with Target having to compete for services.
In October 2008 we won a Rotherham Council contract to deliver accommodation services for 39 offenders and opened an office in the town.
In 2010 Target, in partnership with M25, was selected as preferred bidder by Doncaster Council to deliver support services for 120 offenders.
A Leader in our Field
We officially became a registered social landlord in November 2011.
Our Sheffield service scored a Grade A in Sheffield Council’s Quality Assessment Framework (QAF).
Target began to house asylum seekers in Hull, South Yorkshire, Derby and Nottingham and entered the biggest period of growth in its 22 year history. By the end of the year we had 61 employees, owned 37 units of accommodation, managed 500 units and supported 625 households at any one time. We had a new office in Derby and were gifted a detached house, a flat and cottage by the Norman House Trust.
We took over the Hull Council AST (assured shorthold tenancy) project housing 105 homeless families in private rented properties.
Target undertook a pilot contract from April 2012 to March 2013 to work with high risk offenders. Approximately 90% of clients under this pilot had issues of substance misuse and in some cases were subject to Drug Rehabilitation Orders. We achieved a positive move-on for more than 58%.
Our Doncaster and Rotherham services achieved a QAF A rating.
We won the £705k offender tender in Sheffield in partnership with Action Housing. The offender team moved into Action Housing’s offices in central Sheffield.
Norman House (our former head office) was opened as a hostel for up to 14 single male asylum seekers. We purchased and opened an additional asylum hostel in Rotherham.
Target’s new business development team secured £403,000 from the Big Lottery to help private landlords and EU migrants in Hull understand their housing rights and responsibilities.
We were also selected as a regional partner working with St Martin in the Fields to create a national network of frontline workers helping to shape policy and prevent homelessness.
Secured funding from Children in Need for a three year project to support vulnerable young people in Rotherham.
Our work with asylum seekers is growing…
Our involvement in art and holistic therapy is rapidly developing…
We are continuing to purchase property.
Our partnerships take us into exciting new areas.
We now have around 80 staff in Hull, Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and Derby and lots of irons in the fire.
The Target Housing story.
To be continued…