The Student House Stories began from our work with Shelter and Community Organiser Bryn Phillips on student housing issues, and so to launch our project we started with a campaigns session to understand the problems students speak about in a bottom-up work approach.
In April 2019 we ran a session called Take Action; where a group of students and young people came together to tell stories, learn and plan our forthcoming campaign for student housing rights. In the first part of the session Get It Done invited them to share their student housing horror (or happy!) stories on the washing line, which was then followed by a discussion on key issues that we want to change.
The second part of the session was lead by Kojo Apeagyei from Shelter’s Campaigns Team in London, who came up specially to help us build a solid and constructive campaign. Focussing on the key issue of houses not being safe for human habitation (selected from the stories), we learnt about how to work with important institutions and lobby the council for better living conditions. Finally, at the end we supplied more information on some of the other key issues students face, enabling young people to go on and make their own social change.
Take Action was important in identifying which direction the project would take. In our feedback lots of students reported that they wanted more time to discuss and propose solutions to housing issues, so we took the step to include more discussions in our creative summits.