Terrie Alafat, director of the homelessness and housing support directorate at the ODPM said: 'The ODPM would like to congratulate the Foyer Federation on reaching the milestone of its 100th accredited foyer. This is a great achievement, for which all staff working within the foyers should receive credit.
'Through accreditation, these foyers are now able to demonstrate that they can provide a quality of service for young people that will help to prevent and reduce youth homelessness'.
The Foyer Federation has recently developed a new accreditation system focused on raising standards, driving down bureaucracy and involving service users in assessing the standard of provision they receive.
Jane Slowey, chief executive of the Foyer Federation, said: 'The original accreditation scheme was launched in 1998 as a tool for foyers to monitor their work, develop best practice and gain official recognition.
'I am delighted that, not only do we now have over 100 accredited foyers, but we also have a very rigorous and dynamic tool that helps foyer staff and residents assess and develop the quality of their service.
'I am also pleased that the ODPM has agreed that our new accreditation scheme mirrors their quality assessment framework and is therefore eligible to passport FISH-accredited foyers through supporting people reviews.''
The new accreditation indicators are based around four performance areas, Foyer, Independence, Support and Home (FISH), and are being rolled out across the Foyer network following a successful pilot stage.
1. The Foyer Federation supports 130 foyers across the UK which provide accommodation integrated with education and training opportunities for 10,000 16-25-yea r-olds in housing need each year.
Foyers deliver an holistic life-long learning programme which, on a one-to-one basis, enables each young person to achieve the self-confidence and skills they need to go on to further education, training or employment. For more information please visit www.foyer.net
2. To qualify for accreditation foyers must:
3. Member foyers must commit to the Foyer Federation accreditation scheme, which ensures the quality and consistency of the services provided for young people living in foyers.
The original accreditation scheme was launched in 1998 as a tool for foyers to monitor their work, develop best practice and gain official recognition, and has recently been revised as part of a process to develop the scope of the scheme and meet requirements of the supporting people quality assurance framework.
4. Wendy Jarvis, head of housing care and support at the ODPM, wrote to all local authority chief executives in January 2005 advising them that: 'ODPM have looked in detail at the Foyer Federation accreditation document and is satisfied that the process does mirror the Quality Assessment Framework (QAF) objectives. Authorities can therefore accept the new Foyer accreditation as means of passporting Foyers through the QAF. The Foyer Federation will be happy to supply administering authorities with all the relevant information relating to any Foyer which has recently been accredited.'
5. Information recently distributed by the supporting people monitoring team at ODPM stated that: 'The FISH accreditation scheme makes full use of both the core and supplementary objectives outlined in the quality assessment framework. There exists evidence within the accreditation scheme that some core and supplementary objectives are performing at levels B and A. This clearly demonstrates tha t the accreditation is not a minimum scheme but rather one that is robust and concerned with continuous improvement.'
6. For further information about the Foyer Federation or about Foyers, please contact Sophie Livingstone on 020 7430 2212 or 07967 104 695 or email Sophie@foyer.net
Head of Policy & Communications
The Foyer Federation
3rd Floor, 5-9 Hatton Wall, London EC1N 8HX
Tel: 020 7430 2212
Fax: 020 7430 2213
Mob: 07967 104695
All young people need a home, support and a springboard into independent living, learning and work.
Some don't get it. Foyers fill the gap. www.foyer.net