The Greater London Authority has commissioned homelessness charities St Mungo’s and Thames Reach to provide the new homelessness service as part of a social investment plan to help 831 rough sleepers.
It is designed to work with rough sleepers who miss out on support because they are neither long-term rough sleepers nor new to the streets.
This group accounted for almost half of all rough sleepers in London over the past year.
The GLA worked with the Communities and Local Government department and social finance advisory service Social Finance to develop the homelessness bond, which will run for three years.
Its aim is to reduce rough sleeping by helping people into stable accommodation, getting them into employment and managing their health better.
Social impact bonds allow private investors and philanthropists to support a project but only pay out if the project is successful.
Mayor of London Boris Johnson said:
I am determined to halt the persistent problem of rough sleeping in London, and while we have made great strides in cutting the number of entrenched rough sleepers there is still much more to do. This complex issue requires innovative solutions, and our social impact bond is a good opportunity to encourage philanthropists and the private sector to help deliver a vital public service.
Housing minister Mark Prisk said:
The mayor’s pioneering social impact bond for London’s rough sleepers, backed by government funding, is already leading the way, giving the capital’s homelessness charities the freedom to try new ideas to help the city’s most frequent rough sleepers – who account for nearly half of all rough sleeping in London.
By paying them by results the government can ensure the best value for money, and we can help find the services that really do transform lives for the better.
The government is keen to develop more social impact bonds and announced a £20 million social outcomes fund last week for more SIBs. This was alongside the homelessness SIB and a five-year programme commissioned by Essex Council to try to prevent 100 teenagers ending up in care.
Prime minister David Cameron said:
I’m delighted that we’re taking another lead in launching the social outcomes fund, which will enable more innovative social impact bonds like the two announced.
By providing new forms of finance to invest in more early intervention programmes we can help the most vulnerable and reduce demands on the state.
Source: Inside Housing