‘To be recognised nationally was incredible’: How it feels to win a Guardian public service award

One year on from winning in the housing category at the Guardian Public Services Awards 2018, Heart and Home’s award is still proudly displayed in the office for everyone to see.

“I can’t believe it’s been a whole year! I don’t want our year to end now,” says Pip Yaxley, multiservice manager for the host scheme. Run by the Benjamin Foundation in Norfolk and Suffolk, the service pairs up young care leavers with hosts who can provide them with safe and supported accommodation as they make the transition to independent living.

It matches each young person with a house in their local area, close to their established support networks. Hosts range from single people to couples and families, but the focus is always on finding appropriate and meaningful pairings that can transform lives.

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