I had the pleasure of working with ‘Canopy Housing’ over a ten-week period. The charity turns empty and derelict houses in more disadvantaged areas of Leeds such as Harehills, Burley and Beeston into homes for those who are at risk of becoming homeless. Houses undergo complete demolition and are rebuilt completely by a group consisting of trade workers and volunteers to create homes meeting their individual need and preferences.
There is a strong sense of family at Canopy with both its relationship amongst workers and the tenants, whom are able to choose the finishing touches to their houses, such as paint colours and furniture in order to ensure their dream home is achieved. The knowledge that you were working to improve someone else’s life is the best part of working for canopy by far, but not forgetting all the fun painting and ripping down of ceilings you get to perform (you can’t do that everyday!) Canopy rents the houses out on a social rent in which its residents can afford. It is the most rewarding job, and really is the best way to combat homelessness. It has opened up my eyes to what really can be done to reduce homelessness within major cities. This will not be the last time I work with a charity such as this.