Funding for councils to help rough sleepers of the streets

£220 million has been given to councils across the country to help prevent families becoming homeless and also help rough sleepers off the streets.

The funding boost will target the areas most in need and also includes specialist support for the most vulnerable who require mental health or substance misuse support.  

£107 million will be spent on 800 homes for rough sleepers. This money will be made available immediately for councils to purchase or rent properties to give rough sleepers a safe space to stay whilst they rebuild their lives off the streets.

The Homelessness Prevention Grant has seen a £109 million boost, which brings the total fund to £1.2 billion. The money can be used by by councils to prevent evictions before they occur or fund temporary accommodation.

There is also a further £6 million to increase the number of off-street spaces for rough sleepers in winter, to provide warm and safe places to sleep and access services.

Minister for Housing and Homelessness Felicity Buchan said: "We are working alongside councils and charities to do all we can to help rough sleepers off the streets and to prevent homelessness.

"Today’s announcement brings the total funding to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping to an unprecedented £2.4 billion, meaning we can help thousands of the most vulnerable people and give them the support they need to rebuild their lives."

There is £3 million for Sheffield City Council, some of which will be spent on providing 10 properties for those with a history of rough sleeping.

YMCA Together have be given over £2 million to deliver 20 homes for single homeless young people across Liverpool.

Jon Metcalf, deputy chief executive City of Liverpool YMCA, said: "We’re delighted with the announcement of SHAP funding in Liverpool which will enable us to create much needed homes for younger people experiencing homelessness and together with support that we will be able to provide we aim to help people develop their social capital so that they’re able to navigate safely through a challenging time in their lives."

London boroughs are to receive £38 million for extra homes, beds and specialist mental health and substance misuse services for rough sleepers.

Notting Hill Genesis and the London Boroughs of Camden and Westminster will receive funding to expand their existing Housing First services, providing 55 new and improved affordable homes through a ‘purchase and repair’ model.

The London Borough of Lewisham will also receive £1.6 million to expand their existing Housing First service, providing additional affordable homes and intensive support for former rough sleepers.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: "“This new £38million investment will make a real difference to the lives of vulnerable Londoners and build on our strong track record at City Hall of delivering homes and support in the capital to end rough sleeping for good.

"However, with rough sleeping rising across the country, including in London, it remains essential for Ministers to step up and provide funding for the social and genuinely affordable homes at the scale our city requires, and to patch up our social security safety net caused by short-sighted spending cuts since 2010 – helping to build a better, safer, fairer London for all."

The announcement comes at the same time as London Councils revealed that boroughs’ monthly spending on temporary accommodation for homeless households grew by almost 40% last year – reaching £90 million a month.

Their data also shows that homelessness is still growing in the capital, with the umber of Londoners seeking homelessness support (making a ‘homelessness presentation’) from their local borough increasing 14.5 per cent between September 2022 and September 2023.


Image by Paolo Trabattoni from Pixabay

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