High unemployment, low wages, and expensive rents prevent many young adults from acquiring their own housing in parts of Europe. In response, many European countries have implemented programs that provide young adults with subsidized housing. Despite these provisions, there are still many young people in housing need. In 2010, the General Council of Bas-Rhin began offering 18-25 year olds residing in the department access to Pass'Accompagnment, a program which aims to improve the financial independence and social integration of young adults in the region.
Youth organizations working with the General Council identified interested youth. To be eligible, youth had to be between 18 and 25 years old, and lack financial support from their family. From a sample of 981 eligible participants, researchers randomly assigned 486 youth to the treatment group and 495 youth to a comparison group.
Comparison youth did not participate in the program, but could apply to other housing schemes. Those who were randomly selected to participate in the program were assigned a unique social worker with the task of advising them in matters of employment, education, and housing over the course of two years. If program participants found autonomous housing, the General Council made a commitment to their landlord that they would pay the rent if the participant failed to do so over the following year and a half. Additionally, participants could receive a grant of 1,800 Euros maximum (2,593 USD) which could be spent on a variety of things, including interview clothing and a driver's license, depending on the social worker's assessment. This flexible design was intended to allow the program to address the specific needs of each participant.
The evaluation found that Pass'Accompagnement helped youth find adequate and stable housing two years after the beginning of the program, but had no impact on their professional situation. These results suggest that long-term mentoring and housing support was not sufficient to help youth find jobs. Further iterations of the program could include specific measures geared more directly towards helping youth find employment.