New funding for rough sleeper initiative

9:36am - 04 June 2021
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More than half a million pounds in government funding has been secured by North Somerset Council from the Rough Sleeping Initiative to support work to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping.    

Cllr Mike Bell, North Somerset Council's deputy leader whose portfolio includes housing, said: "We're delighted our bid to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government for 2021/22 was successful and we have been awarded £516,437, meaning we can continue with our successful 'everyone in' approach and help to get people off the streets. 

"Our housing teams have worked incredibly hard since March 2020 to bring those sleeping rough in from the streets and settle them into longer term accommodation. I am confident that together with the strong support of local charities, faith groups and volunteers we can continue this work."

This allocation of money will also allow the continued work with YMCA which supports rough sleepers directly on the streets as well as providing in-reach support to those who may be in accommodation, but need additional support due to their history of rough sleeping. This in-reach work allows a focus to reduce people from returning to sleeping rough. 

"We have made great progress in the last year working alongside the multi-agency partnership called Street 2 Settled and we're committed to sustain this momentum and effort to work with our partners locally to achieve the target of ending rough sleeping by 2024," added Cllr Bell.

Street 2 Settled includes the council’s Homelessness Prevention Team, Somewhere To Go,  Community Response, Avon and Somerset Police, Churches Together, Citizen Advice Bureau, Keysteps, Sirona Health and Care and We Are With You. 

"The funding also enables us to continue with our existing intensive specialist housing support to help people who have slept rough, recover from complex issues and sustain their tenancies. We want to ensure that they are able to settle into new accommodation, find work and sustain a stable life," said Cllr Bell.

"We also have incentives for landlords who can help to provide tenancies for people who have experienced some periods of rough sleeping. If you can help or are interested in knowing more, please contact our lettings team on 01934 426 483 or email lettingsteam@n-somerset.gov.uk."