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2nd Jul, 2022

Stratford District Council secures £200,000 to tackle and prevent homelessness

GOVERNMENT funding of more than £200,000 has been secured to tackle and prevent homelessness in Stratford.

The district council’s housing team will use the cash to cut rough sleeping and support those on the streets find

accommodation as well as employment, education, training, and to address the reasons which may have led to them becoming homeless.

A new post of ‘rough sleeper Initiative coordinator’ is also among new roles supported by recent funding.

People with experiences of homelessness will also be recruited to support and provide advice to those without a roof.

The council’s official annual rough sleeper count in November recorded six regular people sleeping on the street, down from ten in both 2018 and 17. It was also the lowest since the count began in 2010. And during a bi-monthly count at the end of January, the number was down to four.

But the council says, as well as helping people into accommodation, the housing team will focus on helping those in crisis gain support in other aspects of their lives.

District councillor Jo Barker said: “This is great news that the district council has again been able to get government funding to help with our rough sleeping initiatives.

“The ongoing work between our housing services and partners is making a difference in reducing the number of rough sleepers in the district.

“But we won’t be complacent, there is still more to be done to help prevent those vulnerable people falling into rough sleeping in the first place. This new funding will help us continue this vital work.”

The housing team is also working with police and the charity P3, which provides outreach support, to address street begging.

The council will be looking to identify and help those begging but who are not homeless.

Members of the public are being asked to support or donate to the ‘Meaningful Change’ website rather than directly to those begging. The site lists the local support available including housing services, rehabilitation, food, emergency shelter, advice and training, and allows the public to choose where their money goes.

Visit www.meaningfulchange.org.uk for more details.

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