Cultures and Thirteen partnership bringing empty homes in Stockton back to life

Thirteen is working with Cultures CIC to bring empty homes in Stockton back to life in a project designed to provide accommodation for people who have recently been given leave to stay in the UK.

16 Nov 2018

Based in Stockton-on-Tees, Cultures CIC works with individuals and groups from BME, immigrant and refugee communities to improve social, economic and cultural inclusion, and build social cohesion.

Thirteen has leased three empty properties in Stockton to Cultures enabling the organisation to work with prospective tenants to refurbish them ready for occupation.

Cultures will receive rental income from the properties to support its valuable work and formerly empty properties will be brought back to life, which will contribute to the regeneration of the local community.

Sade Sangowawa, founder of Cultures, said: “This project is still in its early stages, but it is going to be really important to people who are granted leave to stay in the country and lose their asylum seeker accommodation, which makes it difficult to access training or employment.

“Thirteen has leased the properties to us and, with hard work and some investment, we will undertake refurbishment work and offer decent homes to individuals or families trying to build a decent life in our town.

“I hope that as we go forward more properties become available to enable us to help even more people.”

Chris Smith, Executive Director of Service Delivery and Development at Thirteen, said: “We’re delighted to be working with Cultures to enable these empty properties to be put to good use.

“It’s important to us that the communities we work in benefit from what we do. This project will contribute to the sustainability of the area and we are happy to support Cultures and the vital work it carries out in communities that risk being marginalised.”