Calls for more funding for homelessness service in Nottingham
Nottingham City Homes has joined the call on the Government to ensure a national expansion and continued long-term funding of a project that helps to house people living on the streets.
Housing First seeks to ensure that vulnerable homeless individuals are given housing and continued ‘wrap-around’ support to help them maintain and stay in their homes. The initiative is about providing independent accommodation with high-quality support in the long term, rather than short term.
In partnership with Nottingham City Council, Framework and Opportunity Nottingham, NCH launched their Housing First project last year, to provide settled accommodation and support to people with long histories of homelessness and rough sleeping.
NCH has so far secured homes for 26 former homeless people to date, and this number will continue to grow. So they are looking to provide ten more flats for Housing First this year and also making a further 20 existing flats available.
Housing First is not always straight forward due to multiple and complex needs of some of the individuals, but by working together with partners and providing complete support, NCH and its partners have seen some real successes. For example, they helped one Housing First tenant move into his flat having spent the last 20 years rough sleeping and in and out of hostels. He’s engaged well and taken on board the basics of managing a tenancy, even the little things that people take for granted such as putting out the bin each week. His daughter reached out to him after he moved into his new home and they have now started to forge a relationship.
Richard Holland, Assistant Director of Housing Operations, said: “We’re very committed to Housing First as a model for helping some of the most disadvantaged people in Nottingham and we are continuing to move the initiative forward with our partners. We hope to expand the service even further by working with health partners and other members of the Nottingham Integrated Care Partnership programme, and to continue building on the successes we have already seen.”
Cllr Linda Woodings, Portfolio Holder for Planning, Housing and Heritage, said: “As a council we are committed to working with partners to help some of the city’s most vulnerable people. Projects like Housing First are making a real difference to people’s lives by supporting homeless individuals to find housing and stay their long term.
“We have had real success with the initiative in Nottingham and we would like to see the scheme rolled out to further areas of the country and for the Government to ensure that funding for such a vital scheme is secured for years to come.”