A scheme which helps single homeless people into homes in the private rented sector is to be extended by two years, housing minister Kris Hopkins has announced.
Since its launch in 2010, the Crisis Private Rented Sector Access Development Programme has helped nearly 8,000 vulnerable people into homes.
Earlier this week Hopkins confirmed £2 million to Crisis to keep the scheme going for another two years – potentially helping over 2,000 single homeless people into the private rented sector.
Access to the private rented sector plays a part in both preventing and supporting the recovery from homelessness, helping people to rebuild their lives.
As part of the £470 million to tackle and prevent homelessness and rough sleeping, the government has invested £20 million to roll-out No Second Night Out across England. This is helping those who slip through the net, identifying more rough sleepers across the country and getting people the support they need to ensure they don’t spend more than one night on the streets.
From April, Crisis will welcome applications from schemes that already have an existing proven track record and want to continue their good work to tackle homelessness.
Crisis funds and supports schemes that work locally with single homeless people and private sector landlords to help them establish sustainable tenancies. The schemes all have the support of their local authority and work closely with a range of local providers.
Over the past four years, 153 projects in 144 council areas have been funded through the access to the private rented sector scheme including: 10 projects working exclusively with rough sleepers, 25 working with former prisoners, 50 helping younger people find shared accommodation, and 65 helping tenants to move on from supported accommodation.
Hopkins said: “We are determined to help prevent and tackle homelessness and rough sleeping that’s why we have invested £470 million over four years to ensure that support is available to the most vulnerable people across the country. Today’s £2 million to Crisis will help 2,000 single homeless people get the support they need to get into homes and start to rebuild their lives.
“In addition, we made £20 million available to roll-out No Second Night Out, which is helping to identify and support more rough sleepers across the country and since April 2013 has helped ensure over 70% of rough sleepers don’t spend a second night on the streets.”
Leslie Morphy, chief executive of Crisis, said: “This additional funding will help ensure that good local schemes across the country can continue their vital work helping single homeless people find and sustain accommodation. Challenging conditions in the private rented sector and increasing demand make this work difficult but all the more important.
“Good schemes will match tenants to landlords, inspect properties to ensure they are of good condition and provide ongoing support to resolve any issues. The funding will also help Crisis to work with schemes across the country ensuring they learn from best practice and make the case that local authorities should fund their work on an ongoing basis.”