Prince William promises ‘really big project’ to tackle hidden homelessness

Prince William promises 'really big project' to tackle hidden homelessness

Prince William is to unveil his vision to end the plight of hidden homelessness, pledging “a really big project” from his and the Princess of Wales’s Royal Foundation.

In his first interview as the Prince of Wales, Prince William said he has made ending homelessness a lifelong ambition and that he will announce a five-year project at the end of the month.

He is frustrated that government, councils and charities have for too long been “managing” homelessness instead of “preventing” it. “We can do it,” he told The Times. “It’s not insurmountable, this challenge. If anyone does become homeless [we can say], ‘OK, here’s the way back, here’s the pathway’. We can visualise that and we can show people that there is a way to do it.”

William is adamant that his new project will have “tangible impact” and provide “living conditions up and down the country that improve people’s lives who need that first rung of the ladder”.

Asked whether he can use the Duchy of Cornwall, a 130,000-acre property empire stretching from Cornwall to Kent, to provide affordable housing for people who are homeless, he replied:  “Absolutely. Social housing. You’ll see that when it’s ready. I’m no policy expert, but I push it where I can.”

Responding to the interview, Matt Downie, chief executive of Crisis, said: “Prince William is absolutely right. We can end homelessness. For too long it has been assumed that this problem is just too difficult or that it’s something we should simply accept as a society. Crisis has never believed that and we stand foursquare behind Prince William in his determination to end homelessness for good.

“The most important step towards that goal is a simple one: more homes. For decades, under successive governments, this country has failed to build enough genuinely affordable, good homes. So it’s great to see Prince William’s commitment to build social housing on Duchy of Cornwall land. We look forward to working together to create a country where everybody can enjoy the basic right of a good home.”

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