£45k helps rough sleepers find a home
Most rough sleepers given money on demand as part of a pilot project to help them into permanent housing spent less than budgeted.
Fifteen long-term rough sleepers in London were chosen to receive a share of a £45,000 grant to help them back into permanent accommodation.
The pilot project, organised by the City of London and homelessness charity Broadway, ran for 18 months and saw seven participants gain accommodation, with two more making plans to move.
Under the scheme each individual was allocated £3,000 to spend on items including homeware and education. They received money when they needed it, but were not told the total amount availalbe. The average spend was £794 per person, the lowest £400 and the highest just over £3,000. The scheme was funded by a £100,000 grant from the Communities and Local Government department.
The individuals were chosen by Broadway staff because of the length of time they had been homeless, which ranged from four to 45 years.
According to Broadway, no individual spent the money on alcohol or drugs directly, although one individual later sold a television he had purchased in order to buy drugs. Davina Lilley, rough sleepers manager at the City of London Corporation, said: ‘The results of the project speak for themselves and we will continue to support it.’
The project will now become part of the City of London’s mainstream homelessness services. Howard Sinclair, chief executive of Broadway, said: ‘By dealing with some of the most difficult people on the streets we’ve actually increased capacity and will be saving money.’