Habitat NI and Ballymena Methodist Church Transform Empty Manse
Habitat NI and Ballymena Methodist Church are working together to transform an empty manse into a useful space. Together, they will turn the empty landmark building in the heart of Ballymena into much needed multi-purpose community space and 3 one-bedroom apartments. These will provide affordable accommodation for vulnerable young people. Young people have been disproportionately affected by a lack of affordable homes and singles make up more than 50% of those in housing stress.
The building on Ballymoney Road, previously the Methodist manse, was rented to commercial tenants but has been unused for the last couple of years.
Rev Dr David Rock, Minister of Ballymena Methodist said,
“The congregation have been focused on how to best use the building to enable the mission of the church to serve those in our community who feel isolated and excluded. Working with Habitat provides an opportunity to develop a community hub which will provide a safe, welcoming space to further develop our ‘Living Rooms’ project but also to include affordable accommodation to help young people. We hope the new space will be a useful resource for the whole community.”
Find out more about Ballymena Methodist Church Living Rooms project here.
Empty homes cost money and deprive communities of an opportunity for good quality housing. Renovating vacant properties reduces blight, supports community regeneration and can help tackle anti-social behaviour.
The church is underpinning the project cost but the project needs more partners, community support and the volunteers who will help deliver the project.
Habitat NI and Ballymena Methodist Church will transform the old manse from an empty building to a multi-purpose community space. They are asking for volunteers to help them.
“With broad support this partnership will transform an old building and deliver positive, lasting change for communities and individuals. This project will bring together people of all ages and backgrounds, delivering opportunities to up-skill for employment as well as affordable homes. We would love to hear from all those who might be willing to provide materials or other support to help deliver real impact in Ballymena,” says Jenny Williams, Chief Executive, Habitat for Humanity Northern Ireland.
To get involved, contact Michael Gray, Community Project Manager or Gillian Cameron, Volunteer Coordinator at Habitat NI on 02892635635.