Community Self Build Agency History

The CSBA was set up in 1980's in the wake of the St Paul's Riots in Bristol. Stella Clarke CBE was moved by the despair of the displaced, young, black men and launched a project that gave them the opportunity to learn vital employment skills in the building trade whilst helping to rebuild their community. From this the CSBA was born and in the intervening years has completed over 178 self build projects across the UK, providing some 1200 housing units and thousands of qualifications for disadvantaged and vulnerable members of the community. 

In 2010 Stella was introduced to Major Ken Hames MBE, an ex SAS officer who made her aware of the plight of homeless service personnel and the focus of the CSBA switched to helping these people and the Veterans Self Build arm of the charity was born.

To date we have helped many Veterans plus their families out of housing crisis and back into employment and education. The benefits to the participants are self-evident but recent independent research carried out by the University of the West of England (UWE) in partnership with The Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT), focussing on veterans has demonstrated clearly the benefits to the public purse. Reductions in the costs: in mental, hidden wounds (PTSD), alcoholism and other health support; in homelessness; in unemployment and housing benefits; in police, social service, probation, hostel and care; in lost income, NI and spending taxes, suggest a substantial economic cost benefit of between £1: £4.7 and £1: £7.20. Click here to read the full report.