Councils secure more than £3 million funding to tackle homelessness
News release issued:
Rough sleepers and people who are at risk of becoming a rough sleeper in Worcestershire are to receive more help thanks to a successful funding application led by Wyre Forest District Council.
The district council applied to the 2022-2025 Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI) on behalf of all district, borough and city councils in the county. They were awarded more than £3 million to help boost intervention services over the next three years.
The RSI aims to prevent rough sleeping and help people move off the streets and out of danger permanently. Across Worcestershire the money will be used to continue to deliver valuable services for rough sleepers and those at risk of rough sleeping. This includes initiatives like No First Night Out, providing emergency accommodation and help for them to access settled accommodation.
Figures from the last four years show that measures Worcestershire councils are taking to tackle the problem are working. The annual rough sleepers count shows a drop of more than 40 per cent in the number of people sleeping rough in the past four years. In 2018, there were 53 rough sleepers in the county, this dropped to 31 in 2021 (based on the annual count).
Councillor Nicky Martin, Wyre Forest District Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for Housing, Health, Wellbeing and Democratic Services said:
“Across Worcestershire our aim is to make sure that everyone has a safe place to live. We are working with partners towards our shared goal of ending homelessness.
With the increasing cost of living and pressure on finances, we are focusing on prevention strategies. We want to help people before they get into a situation of risking losing their home. This funding will be critical to allow us to continue this work.”
Wyre Forest District Council has also been awarded almost £60,000 over the next two years from the Rough Sleeper Accommodation programme. The aim of this programme is to provide accommodation and support for rough sleepers to enable them to move on to independent living.
If anyone sees a rough sleeper in Wyre Forest they can notify Streetlink via the website. This will help the rough sleeper get connected to support services available to them. Anyone working in housing and homelessness advice profession can use the safe guarding worcestershire website and access the Complex Adult Risk Management Framework.
Help is also available for other people at risk of homelessness. Information and advice is available on the council’s homelessness webpages or by emailing the housing advise team or calling the Hub on 01562 732928.