City of Wolverhampton Council has successfully secured £198,000 in grant funding to boost its work in tackling rough sleeping in the city.

The Government’s Next Steps Accommodation Programme award is to be used in the 2020/21 financial year.

The funds will provide short term accommodation to 22 people who are either rough sleeping or at risk of rough sleeping.

The council will work with partners to provide accommodation and support across the city over the winter - and will also work with clients to help them find more permanent and settled accommodation.

During the coronavirus crisis the city’s Homeless Operational Group has helped more than 60 people into long term safe, suitable and sustainable accommodation, and a further 100 have been supported to return to previous accommodation, find their own accommodation and/or engage with support.

Councillor Jacqueline Sweetman, Cabinet Member for City Assets and Housing, said: “It is quite right that the Government has recognised the positive work we are doing in the city to tackle the issue of rough sleeping and the extra funding will help support this.

“Our work during the coronavirus crisis has built on the collaborative, partnership working approach to services for homeless individuals and rough sleepers in Wolverhampton. 

“We will continue to actively work with partner agencies to find longer term solutions for preventing rough sleeping in the city.

"We particularly focus our efforts on preventing someone from becoming homeless in the first place and work closely with our partner agencies to find solutions for, people threatened with homelessness, and ensuring support is available for those who are unable to maintain their tenancy for whatever reason. 

“Many of those who are homeless have complex needs, including physical and mental health problems. Our Public Health and Housing teams’ partnership approach with homelessness organisations across the city is delivering positive results and the lessons learnt will play a major part in how we shape this service going forward. 

“Nobody has to sleep outside in our city and nobody has to go hungry.”

Operational group partners include: Wolverhampton Homes, St George’s Hub, P3, Enterprise Homes Group, Good Shepherd, Recovery Near You, RMC, Wolverhampton BID, Solace, Changing Lives, Police, Wolverhampton CCG, Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, and Probation services.
For details on how to contact support services to help those experiencing rough sleeping, visit Rough sleepers.    

People can also help the homeless and rough sleepers by donating money to the city’s Alternative Giving Campaign via JustGiving.