Leeds introduces '"homeless mapping" of services for homelessness

  • In Leeds, a new initiative called "homeless mapping" has been introduced, aimed at ensuring homeless and vulnerable people in the city get the help they need.

    Led by Unity in Poverty Action and Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust, it involves 10 organisations and nine churches offering practical help such as medication, food and befriending services.

    John Walsh works for the York Street Health Practice, which provides medical support for vulnerable and homeless people in the city.

    He says it's the first time so many different groups have become involved in a project like this:

    The idea was to have a list of names and addresses of groups and organisations so that from Monday to Sunday vulnerable and homeless people always had someone to go to.

    We knew when agencies 
closed at five o'clock on an evening that community and faith-based groups were opening their doors to provide very basic things like food, clothing, or someone to talk to.

    In the past, if someone came to see us and said they had no food then we would ring round, we might be successful and we might not be.

    Now with the map we know who is most likely to have food and also be able to offer some care and support.

    It's very rare for people to [make steps to recovery] on their own, they need support to help turn their lives around and these organisations on the homeless map provide that and they often provide it at a time when a person is at their most vulnerable.

    In the past, these groups operated independently, but Walsh says by working together the different statutory bodies and voluntary groups know who to contact when somebody comes to them in need of help.

    It's about creating what he calls a "coalition of care" to address the needs of the city's homeless population, providing basic needs like food and clothing, as well as being a place to find friendship, support and feel safe.

    Dave Paterson, a project co-ordinator with Unity in Poverty Action, says people often have complex needs and admits there are fears about the potential impact of future government cuts:

    There are concerns about how the welfare reforms will affect the most vulnerable. I heard recently that we are only 15 per cent into the cuts and they are going to continue until 2016, so that is a concern.

    What we will see if the economy doesn't pick up is more people from better backgrounds who end up being homeless.

    The positive thing in Leeds is there are a lot of services providing help and support and the map is part of that, so if anyone does become homeless today there are options for them.

    The hope is that by working more closely with each other care providers and voluntary groups can get homeless people off the streets and making a positive contribution to society.

    Source: Yorkshire Post



Related articles

  • Read More

    New service to support homeless people in Birmingham

    A new dedicated Homeless Street Triage car will be responding to the rising number of calls reporting homelessness, begging and anti-social drinking in the city, reports 24dash.In the last year –...

  • Read More

    Gym in Kent hopes to improve health and fitness of homeless people

    Riverside is a specialist in working with single homeless people to help them get their lives back on track and into accommodation. Their new project, a gymnasium, has been funded by the Riverside...

  • Read More

    The cost of homelessness in Hackney doubles

    Figures have shown that the cost of homelessness in 2009/10 was £3,092,255 compared to £7,167,440 in 2014/15, with a cut on staff spending from £3,239,653 to £2,608,491 reports 24dash.Hackney...

  • Read More

    Two homelessness services to be investigated

    The Scottish Housing Regulator is set to investigate every aspect of services offered by Dumfries and Galloway Council, whilst also examining how homeless people access help and support at Scottish...

  • Read More

    Homeless project for young people under threat due to cuts

    Platform for Life was expected to attract interest from numerous housing associations with its scheme to convert properties into accommodation for young people in further education, training or work,...

  • Read More

    Charities warns Irish government of homelessness crisis

    Social Justice Ireland is calling for a new funding system that will meet the demand and reveal that only 20 council homes for families have been completed within the first three months of this year,...

  • Read More

    Newspaper office to become a centre for homeless people

    The old office for the Doncaster Free Press is being transformed into flats and other facilities for people who are homeless, reports Hold the Front Page. The building is being turned into...

  • Read More

    Cuts leaving people in Cheltenham needing homelessness support

    Bosses at CCP and Cheltenham Borough Council have said the “devastating impact” of benefit cuts in the town are causing issues for many people, report the Gloucestershire Echo.Over the past few...

  • Read More

    Concern that homelessness in Cambridge is at ‘tipping point’

    Not only do figures show a rise in quarterly numbers by 24 households, they also reveal that over 350 cases were placed in temporary accommodation over the last year, which was a rise of 50 cases on...

  • Read More

    Charities say Wales is “setting an example” for homelessness

    A joint report by Crisis and the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has praised Welsh laws that are trying to address the issues of homelessness, reports the BBC.However they warn that the removal of...

What are the Future Funding Arrangements for Supported and Sheltered Housing? "Information on Exempt Accommodation & DWP Review was very informative, but also commend your approach in delivering workshops/conferences in a proactive way, and use of email and your website as a public resource" P.C. - The Hyde Group  


Briefing Signup