Cotswold District Council has approved £60,000 of funding to implement a ‘Housing First’ approach to reducing homelessness in the district.
Housing First helps people with complex personal issues who have been homeless for a long time or who have had issues in sustaining accommodation. This often means people return to or are living on the streets. Housing First will help people to move into their own permanent home with a tenancy agreement and extensive support. The aim is to provide a robust and personalised approach to finding permanent accommodation.
Cllr Lisa Spivey, Cabinet Member for Housing and Homelessness, said; “I am delighted that Cabinet has approved the funding to invest in trialling the Housing First approach here in the Cotswolds. This is a really exciting project and an entirely new step for the Cotswolds in dealing with homelessness.
“Homelessness is often caused by a number of complex needs and for some people, the traditional intervention routes don’t work. We want to introduce a unique approach that provides intensive, person-centred and holistic support that is open-ended.
“The Housing First Scheme allows us to help our most vulnerable people leave the streets, find suitable housing and access the support they need to get their lives back on track. We are absolutely committed to enabling all our residents to access a good quality of life and now, more than ever, the importance of having a safe space to call home is vital.”
In response to the Government’s drive to move all rough sleepers from the streets and into short-term accommodation to self-isolate during the COVID-19 pandemic, Cotswold District Council has found emergency accommodation for 30 households.
The Council believes that developing a Housing First approach will provide a more long-term solution in finding these people permanent homes.
This Housing First model works in reverse to the traditional model by offering a person with multiple needs a permanent residence alongside intensive support to address their needs by way of a Housing First Support Worker.