From 11-18 December, Shelter will install a collection of front doors in Birmingham New Street station to raise awareness of the city’s housing emergency.
The public is invited to visit the installation to view the 10 doors. Each door has been decorated by an independent artist, inspired by real-life stories from local families who’ve experienced homelessness.
Poor financial health and homelessness go hand in hand, which is why HSBC UK and Shelter are working together to support people in building financial resilience and helping to break the vicious circle of homelessness.
In Birmingham, HSBC UK is funding targeted interventions reaching people who are at higher risk of homelessness, such as single-parent families, marginalised people, and people with complex needs. Working together with people with lived experience and other charities, Shelter will co-produce the programme to improve access to support, build financial resilience and challenge discrimination within the housing system.
One artist participating in the art installation is Fungai Benhura. Fungai’s work is made up of multiple layers of different materials, each layer representing history that’s being buried and rediscovered. The end product unveils a painting that has a character and personality of its own. Their work also explores being at a stage of creation or destruction.
Fungai’s door was inspired by Zoe’s story
Zoe ended up homeless after being evicted from her home in 2017. She was stuck in a cycle of homelessness and financial hardship because she did not have access to a bank account, resulting in her universal credit being stopped. By getting a bank account through HSBC UK’s ‘No Fixed Address’ scheme, Zoe was able to turn her life around. She now lives in a two-bed social home with her partner and daughter and is starting to build up her financial resilience.
‘I was evicted from my home and then everything spiralled out of control. I was sofa-surfing for about a year before I got put into a hostel when pregnant with my youngest daughter. My support worker Hayley helped turn everything around – she helped me get on the list for a two-bed flat and helped me open a bank account through HSBC’s ‘No Fixed Address’ scheme.
‘Before I moved into my current flat, I didn’t have a bank account for 10 years because I didn’t have a permanent address or a photo ID. I didn’t have the spare £75 to get myself a provisional driving licence, as there were always more pressing things I needed to spend the money on. Without a bank account, I didn’t have any money coming in – I wasn’t able to claim child benefit for my youngest daughter, and eventually my universal credit account was closed.
‘Getting that bank account made a whole world of difference to me. If you don’t have access to a bank account, you are stuck – so I was ecstatic that I was able to get one open. Now I have a secure home, I’m able to pay my own bills and receive benefits for my daughters. It has helped me move forward with my life.’
‘No Place Like Home’ runs from 11-18 December at Birmingham New Street station. Find out more information about our partnership with HSBC UK, or get help with your own housing issues by following our online advice.