Press release

£23 million to help homeless turn around their lives

The government has announced £23 million of funding to help the homeless.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

1600 of the most vulnerable homeless young people in the country will be helped to get their lives back on track with the £15 million Fair Chance Fund, while the £8 million Help for Single Homeless Fund will support around 22,000 single homeless people.

The new Fair Chance Fund, announced at today’s (9 December 2014) Youth Homelessness Parliament, will pay for sustained housing, employment and educational support for homeless 18 to 24 year olds with investors putting in money now on a long-term payment by results basis.

Young people with the greatest needs, which other services may already have failed, will be helped by charities to find accommodation, gain qualifications and move into work using investment from innovative new social impact bonds.

Homelessness Minster Kris Hopkins said:

This government is determined to get effective support to the most vulnerable in society, especially young people who may have fallen into homelessness due to any number of problems. A joined up approach that works for them cannot only be about providing accommodation. To properly turn around their lives we also need to deal with all of their problems and find ways to get them the skills they need to get back into work and look after themselves for the long term.

Civil Society Minister Rob Wilson said:

I am really pleased to be backing the Fair Chance Fund. It is a great example of how innovative social investment has the potential to achieve great things for people whom traditional funding cannot reach. This will give voluntary sector organisations the freedom to do what’s needed, when it’s needed.

Communities Minister Stephen Williams said:

This is a great example of how this government is finding new ways to do work that has never been done before for a really hard to help group of people. I look forward to seeing the results and building on this pioneering work in the future.

It is expected that the scheme will create significant long-term savings for taxpayers because of its impact in reducing crime, poor health and long term benefit dependency amongst the target group. Local authorities will be responsible for referrals to the Fair Chance Fund schemes, ensuring that young people with the greatest need are prioritised.

Each of the bids is funded through a social impact bond, where the cost of services is paid for by social investors, who stand to lose their money if positive outcomes are not achieved. The UK is the world leader in this type of investment, which aims to improve delivery of innovative solutions to complex social problems and transfer risk from both the tax payer and the voluntary sector organisations who will be working with the young people.

The Single Homeless Fund is about better help for individuals with complex needs. It’s not just about housing – it’s about a more integrated approach with better collaboration between agencies.

£8 million has been made available to support around 22,000 people of whom 6,000 will be newly homeless. Over 12,000 of them will be people with 1 or more support needs and around 3,500 will be people with multiple support needs and a history of rough sleeping.

Announcing the 34 winning bids, Homelessness Minister Kris Hopkins said:

This is a vital initiative which will help individuals who are some of the hardest to reach, and who often have complex needs, not just simply a roof over their head.

These projects will offer precisely the sort of support that many single homeless people need to help turn their lives around and give them a long term solution that supports their needs.

Further information

Fair Chance Fund

Seven projects have today been awarded a share of up to £15 million Fair Chance Funding over 3 years from January 2015.

Up to 7 new Social Impact Bonds to help turn around the lives of the most vulnerable young homeless people.

Funding comprises £10 million from Department for Communities and Local Government and £5 million from the Cabinet Office Social Outcomes Fund.

The winning Fair Chance Fund bids are led by:

  • DePaul UK – working in Greenwich, Manchester, Oldham and Rochdale
  • Fusion Housing – working in Kirklees, Calderdale and Wakefield
  • Home Group – working in Newcastle, Northumberland, South Tyneside, North Tyneside, Gateshead, Durham and Sunderland
  • Local Solutions – working in Liverpool and Knowsley
  • P3 – working in Gloucestershire, Tewkesbury, Forest of Dean, Stroud, Cheltenham, Gloucester City and Cotswold
  • St Basils – working in Birmingham, Coventry, Solihull, Walsall and Wyre Forest
  • The Y – working in Leicester, Leicestershire, Derby and Derbyshire

Outcomes payments will be made according to whether young homeless people with complex needs can:

  • sustain settled accommodation for 3 months, 6 months, 12 months and 18 months
  • achieve National Vocational Qualification equivalent qualifications
  • maintain volunteering
  • sustain full time or part time work for between 6 and 26 weeks

The detailed Fair Chance Fund eligibility criteria for young people are as follows:

Providers can only claim outcome payments for young people who meet all of the following criteria:

  • aged 18 to 24 (21 and over if they are care leavers)
  • not in employment, education or training
  • homeless as defined in the homelessness legislation but not in priority need under that legislation
  • a priority for local authority support but unable to be accommodated in a supported housing scheme due to eg:

    • previous difficulties in, or eviction from, supported accommodation indicating that available supported housing provision is unlikely to succeed
    • security issues eg for young people involved in gangs or those who have committed serious offences
    • their needs are deemed too high/complex to manage within a supported housing scheme because of eg substance misuse, significant mental health issues, low/medium learning disability or personality disorders but not reaching the threshold for adult social care services
    • lack of specialist supported accommodation

View the Fair Chance Fund specification and associated bidding documents.

Help for Single Homeless Fund

Single Homeless Fund: list of successful projects (PDF, 168 KB, 3 pages)

The key aim of the fund is to encourage local authorities to work with local partners (public health, voluntary sector organisations, probation service) to provide a stronger single homeless offer and to prevent single homelessness.

The successful projects demonstrate a good spread of cross boundary working with strong partnerships. We expect the 34 projects to provide help and support to around 22,000 people, of whom 6,000 will be newly homeless, over 12,000 will be people with 1 or more support needs and around 3,500 will be people with multiple support needs and a history of rough sleeping. In total 168 local authorities are involved – more than half of all English authorities and 29 projects are providing local funding. Homeless Link will be conducting a survey to monitor progress of all projects in 2014 to 2015 and provide assurance before release of funding in 2015 to 2016.

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Published 9 December 2014