Bloomberg Supports Major Homeless Veterans’ Facility Transformation

Sep 23, 2015 11:55 AM ET

Originally posted on

Veterans Aid today announced that the £6.5 million refurbishment project to transform its East London hostel into a world-class facility has had major support from Bloomberg.

The global business, financial information and news leader is running a seven-month volunteer initiative, committing 1,200 employees to work on renovation of the 12-bedroom move-on house that is an integral part of the facility. When completed, the refurbished New Belvedere House will house up to 63 homeless veterans in accommodation equipped to prepare them for sustainable, independent living.

The partnership between Veterans AidBloomberg and Habitat for Humanity illustrates a unique collaboration between veterans, employees and the community.

CEO of Veterans Aid Dr Hugh Milroy said, “Our New Belvedere House makeover project is the largest single investment of money, human resource and community engagement in the charity’s history and it is on track to deliver a facility that will change the way people think about hostels.”

Business Development Manager David Clare from Habitat for Humanity Homes said, “We are thrilled to be partnering with Veterans Aid and Bloomberg to refurbish part of the Old Rectory hostel.”

Design Director of Wimshurst Pelleriti William Wimshurst added, “Like Veterans Aid, we truly believe that the building we are creating will greatly enhance the wellbeing of its residents; they need to feel warm and secure and above all be uplifted by the environment around them. It is a joy for an architect to work with a client with aspirations like these.”

The role of the Old Rectory building is to prepare men moving from single room accommodation for life with more autonomy and responsibility. Its 12 refurbished rooms will continue to form shared apartments where residents take collective responsibility for cleaning, cooking and housekeeping.

The Bloomberg volunteers, some of whom are veterans themselves, will participate in every aspect of the building’s renovation, from stripping out redundant equipment and taking down old walls to building new structures and redecorating.

“Partnering with Veterans Aid and Habitat for Humanity on the Old Rectory’s transformation is one of the ways Bloomberg supports the re-entry of ex-servicemen and women into civilian life,” said Jemma Read, Bloomberg’s Head of Philanthropy in Europe. “Giving back to local communities is a key part of our culture and we are delighted that over a third of our London staff will have the opportunity to support this meaningful project.”

In 2014, Bloomberg supported 1,200 non-profits in 28 countries with more than 7,300 employee volunteers contributing more than 57,000 hours of service across 53 cities worldwide.