As part of a wider £66m funding grant from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), more than 60 councils are set to receive a share of up to £52m to provide specialist support services for rough sleepers and those at risk.
Funded through the Government’s Drug and Alcohol Treatment Grant scheme, services include one-to-one support and mentoring.
As we approach the winter period and temperatures fall, local authorities across the country have began stepping up efforts to help get rough sleepers off the street and engaged with services who can help provide the support they need.
The success of the Everyone In initiative during the pandemic, which managed to support 37,000 vulnerable people around the UK into longer term accommodation during the pandemic, has been as a key milestone to now build on.
Already, the Government has been able to reduce rough sleeping by a third, but over the next three years, annual investments of £640m (an 85% increase in funding compared to 2019) hopes to further tackle the problem.
This builds on £202m in funding provided to councils to help people off the streets, funding 14,500 bed spaces for rough sleepers and 2,700 specialist support staff around the country.
Last year, another £112m was invested into tackling the issue.
Minister for Rough Sleeping and Housing, Eddie Hughes MP said: “Rough sleepers are some of the most vulnerable people in our society and we must help them off the streets and end the plight of rough sleeping once and for all.
“That means providing somewhere safe and warm for them to stay, and this funding will be a lifeline for thousands as the temperature drops this winter.
“We are also helping those trapped in drug and alcohol addiction and giving them the stability they need to turn their lives around.”
The remaining DLUHC funding includes £3.8m in grants to voluntary, faith and community groups through the Homelessness Transformation Fund, which will help transform shared accommodation into Covid-secure, self-contained accommodation, providing safe spaces for rough sleepers to stay.
Additionally, up to 3,500 rough sleepers will be provided with emergency accommodation, with areas most in need of support to tackle rough sleeping invited to bid for funding from the £10m Winter Pressures Fund.
Minister for Care, Gillian Keegan, added: “It’s crucial we support people experiencing homelessness – particularly those wanting to break the cycle of addiction.
“This additional funding will not only help those personally fighting drug and alcohol addiction, but it will also benefit their friends, families and the communities who are also impacted by the consequences of substance misuse.
“More widely, we continue to support people without a home, including around access to vaccines throughout the pandemic, and recently announcing £16m for pilot projects to support homeless people being discharged from hospital.”