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Yes We Rent! - Leveraging vacant private property to build up a cooperative affordable housing scheme Mataró, Spain Housing

Modifier 15 January 2020 by YEs We Rent! project team

Salesians Sant Jordi starts training 12 youngsters in rehabilitation works within the Yes We Rent! project

Rehabilitation works within the Yes We Rent! project
Short description
Yes We Rent! is a project coordinated by Mataró City Council (SPAIN), to try to bring solutions to the dramatic lack of affordable rental housing in the city. This lack of affordable rental housing has been experienced in the last years and has aggravated with the economic crisis and its social consequences, particularly now that housing prices are on the rise again.

Yes We Rent! aims at generating an accessible housing stock targeting low-to-medium income households using properties from Mataró that have been left empty and off the market. To do so, the task of these youngsters is crucial, as they will participate in the works and restoration of these vacant flats to put them in shape to be rented to new tenants. With this initiative, the City Council aims at targeting another important concern for the City, which is the employability of the young people, one of the segments that have suffered the most from the negative impact of the economic crisis.
The participation of Salesians Sant Jordi, which is one of the partners of the project, focuses on the training work that began in October 2019 with a group of 12 young people. Within the framework of the project, which will last until the end of 2021, a total of 24 young people will be trained, distributed in two groups of 12 people each.
The participants in the training sessions are 12 people, ranging from 18 to 29 years of age, which were neither studying nor working. The selection of the participants was made from Salesians Sant Jordi among the referrals received from the Social Welfare Department of the City Council, the Municipal Employment Service and other entities from the Third Sector of the city of Mataró. 
The training offers them the opportunity to learn new competences and to acquire the necessary skills to work in different aspects within the field of construction and hence, enhances their possibilities of employability once they finish. 
The course, which began in October and will last until July 2020, has a dual approach, both technical and practical. On the one hand, they undertake the theoretical modules, which will last 6 months, in which they will learn the methodological aspects on how to work in the field of carpentry, construction, energy efficiency, plumbing and electricity. On the other hand, the last three months of the course, they will put into practice the acquired knowledge by working on some of the flats attracted by the project and that need to be renovated before the new tenants can be allocated.
The training is delivered by professionals on the different aspects of the renovation works and includes cross-cutting modules such as energy efficiency or prevention of occupational hazards. Nonetheless, as important as what they learn is to work on their social abilities to enhance the possibilities to get a job in the future. In this regard, the team of social workers of Salesians Sant Jordi will monitor the whole process and every student will be offered an individually based programme during the training period to work on the interpersonal skills necessary for their future insertion into the labour market.
Salesians Sant Jordi is a Foundation that has a long tradition in Mataró working with children, youngsters and their families who are in difficulties due to their social vulnerability. They provide services such as support, mentoring and training amongst others, to secure that they can fulfil their personal project of full development within the society.
The goal, then, is not only to train these young people to undertake the necessary arrangements in the flats that are part of the Yes We Rent! project, but also to facilitate their future insertion into the labour market.

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