Additional funding received for rough sleeping initiative
A new post to provide further support to help tackle homelessness in Telford and Wrekin is to be created thanks to £10,000 funding from the Cold Weather Fund from the Department of Housing, Communities and Local Government. This will fund an engagement worker to help rough sleepers and to reduce homelessness during the coldest months.
This worker is concentrating on three key areas:
• Outreach in the community working with individuals to access services and help prevent rough sleeping.
•Supporting rough sleepers with access to the “sit up” service for those not choosing to access accommodation so they are safe and secure during the winter period.
•Sourcing additional accommodation to help those experiencing rough sleeping to access accommodation.
This is in addition to the Housing Solutions team who already provide advice to more than 3000 people throughout the year and provide in-depth support to around 150 clients through homeless applications where support is provided to help relieve homelessness in the borough.
In addition to this funding £100k of Telford 50 legacy funding from the Council has already enabled four new workers to be employed to better support people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless; a mental health worker, a resettlement officer, an engagement coach and a volunteer link-coordinator.
New challenges arise as the number of potential rough sleepers are referred, particularly during the winter period.
The Council works in partnership with local organisations to help tackle homelessness, two of which include KiP and Maninplace. KiP a community initiative of Maninplace works in the borough in response to the growing needs of rough sleepers.
KiP also delivers essential services in Telford and Wrekin to support the homeless, particularly rough sleepers, through its Walk In Accommodation Hub in Wellington, along with STAY Telford who provides invaluable services in helping identify rough sleepers and those who may not wish to engage with services.
KiP provides a drop in service for those experiencing rough sleeping in partnership with the council and works closely with all partners including STAY and YMCA.
Cllr Richard Overton, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “The success of this work is a vital life line in Telford and Wrekin to people sleeping rough and homeless people at their time of need – thanks to the legacy fund and this additional funding from the Cold Weather Fund.
“We have seen an increase already of those single homeless clients contacting us for additional help and assistance and these new roles would enable us to help more clients rapidly.”
The £2 million Telford 50 Legacy Fund supports a mix of physical schemes as well as other projects that help tackle key social issues in the borough and reduce demand on council services.
News on these schemes is published on www.telford50.co.uk/legacy