21 Sep 2020

Council secures 'Next Steps' funding

Vulnerable Islanders who were housed during the coronavirus pandemic will be helped to stay in accommodation — thanks to more than £528,000 of government funding secured by the Isle of Wight Council.

The funding boost is set to make a real difference to the lives of former rough sleepers on the Island, ensuring they continue to have a safe place to stay and receive the support they need to rebuild their lives away from the streets.

The money will support new tenancies for those provided with emergency accommodation during lockdown and enable the council to progress plans to develop a multi-agency assessment hub which will provide 17 units of supported accommodation.

Jamie Brenchley, the council's service manager for housing needs and homelessness, said: "Our response to protect people at risk of homelessness during this crisis has protected many lives.

"The call by government to get 'everyone in' on 26 March made the invisible, visible and has provided us with an unprecedented opportunity to end homelessness.

"The additional funding will help us implement bespoke plans designed to provide interim and long term accommodation for those who need it most, supplemented by specialist tailored support to help people on their unique journeys from homelessness to home."

The funding was secured by the council's homelessness prevention team from the government's Next Steps Accommodation programme, launched by housing secretary Robert Jenrick in the summer.

It will support a range of new surgeries and workshops on the Island designed to improve people's health and wellbeing, ability to manage a tenancy and find independence in the community via employment and education.

Councillor Clare Mosdell, Cabinet member for adult social care, public health and housing needs, said: "Our successful bid will allow us to move towards the vision we have set out in our homelessness and rough sleeping strategy, which is for everyone living on the Island to have a safe place they can call home."

Last month the council announced a new £1.4 million a year service to target single people experiencing homelessness.



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The funding boost is set to make a real difference to the lives of former rough sleepers on the Island
The funding boost is set to make a real difference to the lives of former rough sleepers on the Island
Factfile
  • The money will support new tenancies for those provided with emergency accommodation during lockdown.
  • The funding was secured by the council's homelessness prevention team.
 
Isle of Wight, UK