As part of Stoll’s blog series, this month they hear from Julian Coates, the scheme’s project manager. Julian has worked in social care for 22 years and has been with Stoll since October 2012.
The Veterans’ Nomination Scheme works in partnership with housing associations, local authorities and other Veterans’ charities to match accommodation with Veterans in need of housing. It is funded by the Royal British Legion. Through the scheme, Stoll arranges access to housing for Veterans who have been living in unsuitable accommodation. This includes people who are sleeping on a friend’s sofa, living in a hostel or are in supported housing. The scheme can also help find accommodation for Service Leavers who are making the transition to civilian life and is aimed mainly at single people, and couples without children, who would not normally be able to get a place in social housing.
“I love my job as I get to see first hand the impact that we have on those Veterans who really need our help and the positive change that we can make to their lives. I work with a fantastic colleague, Tania and our day largely consists of two things: taking calls from Veterans who are in urgent need of housing and need help and advice, and building relationships with housing providers across the country, telling them about the VNS and encouraging them to allocate properties to the scheme. The second point is crucial because it means that when someone needs a home, the team can call specific contacts who know in advance what we do and how desperate the situation often is. Only last week we were able to house a Veteran extremely quickly with a local council because we had an established relationship with the team there so they were aware of the urgency and acted accordingly.