A 16-year-old City College student and her friends have helped raise vital awareness for housing charity BCHA.

Sophie Mullen, a first-year student in Public Services at the Plymouth college, is part of the National Citizen Service (NCS) programme for teenagers and when asked to choose a charity to support she had no doubt where her help was needed.

Sophie said: “I know about the work of charitable housing association BCHA through my mum, Sam, who is part of BCHA’s Plymouth outreach work. Several NCS teams had to compete for their charity to be chosen and our team won.

“We made a video promoting awareness of the charity, started a Facebook page and set up a simple act of kindness – gift-wrapped books with a tag linking to our Facebook page.”

Money to buy and wrap the books was donated in a Dragons’ Den-type scenario at the college which secured Sophie’s NCS team £25.

Sophie, who has ambitions to eventually become a police officer or join the Navy, says she and her fellow students wanted to prove that the younger generation in Plymouth understand the problems faced by BCHA’s customers and are ready and willing to help them.

BCHA provide accommodation and outreach support services to people experiencing homelessness in Plymouth.

Sophie’s mum Sam said: “It’s great to share some news about the good things being achieved by young people in the city. Sophie is passionate about raising awareness of the plight of Plymouth’s homeless people and we are delighted with her team’s efforts.”

  • £5 can provide a bus fare for a day to access activities and appointments
  • £60 can provide a new outfit for a person coming to us from the street with no clothing other than what they come in wearing.
  • £1,000 keeps a Rough Sleeper in emergency accommodation for a month
  • £5,000 would buy 60 starter packs for customers moving into a new home, which would include, kitchen starter set, dinner set, Bathroom towel set, duvet, pillows, full bedding set
  • £10,000 would currently cover the interest cost on a private finance loan of around £333,000 that could fund the building of around three new homes