Ealing Council's Housing Solutions Service internship
When would you like the placement to start? May/June
How long is the placement for? Initially for 6 months then subject to review up this may be up to 12 months
Project specification & key deliverables
This internship is to work as part of the Housing Demand team which is within the Safer Communities and Housing Directorate
Reporting to a Housing Solutions Manager and working closely with the Head of Housing Solutions on a day to day basis work on specific projects and initiatives appropriate to the post.
The core project will include delivering a project to help the service to prepare for increased homelessness, through welfare reforms and to consider its response to forthcoming changes in homelessness legislation.
The project will be to develop further work which has already commenced on addressing the risk of increased homelessness posed by further reductions in welfare benefit for families in our Borough.
We want to extend the project, so that we can reach out to families before they have come to the point of housing crisis and so that we can develop inclusive housing options, which are accessible for more vulnerable households.
The work will involve direct work with a selected cohort of families, as well as doing some data analysis and collection, with a view to helping the Council understand which factors are indicative that a family will become homeless, without being able to resolve the problem for itself.
With training and with supervision which will reduce as the person’s experience increases, interns will meet housing customers, to carry out sensitive interviews about their circumstances, in order to ensure that we can pitch services at the appropriate level, and develop tools and resources to support this.
They will improve and create resources for future use by the Housing Solutions service and, in doing so, help the service to prepare for legislative changes which the Homelessness Reduction Bill will introduce and which are expected to be inforce in a year’s time.
They will work in partnership with our Housing Solutions Officers and with the Council’s Local welfare Assistance teams, Children’s Social Services and other partners, both to gather qualitative and statistical information and to help achieve more joined-up working practices.
The internship project will be divided as follows:
· Phase 1 (one month): Induction, with an opportunity to observe, shadow officers in different housing teams and learn about the overall work of the Housing Demand division.
· Phase 2 (Four and a half months): Working directly with customers, developing tools and resources and seeking agreed positive outcomes for customers at risk of homelessness.
· Phase 3 (2 weeks): Completion of written and electronic resources’; documentation of progress and outcomes of customer interventions; feedback and handover to management.
The role of the Intern will evolve and the role may include taking on other responsibilities.
We are looking for graduates with an interest in gaining invaluable experience because they are keen to pursue a career in housing or a similar field, with a good understanding of the causes and effects of homelessness, ideally with an existing understanding of what changes have been introduced to welfare benefits and the ability to understand, or quickly learn about, the interplay between rents, local housing allowance figures and capped benefits.
We are seeking graduates who have excellent people skills, who are interested in using these to help and support vulnerable families. The successful candidates will need to be able to show empathy and understanding but also have the skills to work with customers under stress. Those who apply will need to have the personal resilience needed to be able to work with people who may not be able to achieve the housing outcome they want and must be able to handle difficult conversations if the need arises.
It will also be necessary to have good writing skills, both for report-writing and for writing self-help pages for customers and staff guidance notes, as well competent in the use of IT systems particularly for email and diary management and good computer literacy in MS Office Pro (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint). Part of the project will be to help to design electronic or online tools for staff and customer use.
- A relevant degree. Must be able to demonstrate a strong interest in pursuing a career in housing, and in prevention of homelessness
- Must demonstrate an understanding of some of the key issues/policy considerations in the sector.
- Must be confident with highly developed interpersonal skills
- Demonstrate knowledge/experience and a real interest in the area of homelessness and an understanding of some of the key issues/policy considerations in the sector.
- Ability to empathize and understand how to communicate effectively with people in difficult situations
- Assertiveness, coupled with the ability to remain caring, polite and professional
- Resilience and adaptability
- Ability to understand and draw inferences from data and information
£341.25 Per week