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West Norfolk Council given £700k to tackle rough sleeping



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The Communities Secretary, Robert Jenrick MP, has announced new Government funding of more than £700,000 for West Norfolk Council to create new, safe, long-term homes for rough sleepers.

The borough submitted a funding application in August to the Next Steps Programme for funding to support people who had been provided with accommodation during the Get Everyone In Government-led drive at the start of the pandemic to get people off the streets.

Adrian Lawrence, cabinet member for housing, said: “I’m delighted to hear this funding has been secured.

Borough Council of King's Lynn and West Norfolk Councillors. (42921658)
Borough Council of King's Lynn and West Norfolk Councillors. (42921658)

"The support from James Wild MP has been crucial in getting help and a roof over the head of some of the most vulnerable people in west Norfolk.”

James Wild, MP for North West Norfolk, added: “When Covid-19 hit the council, Purfleet Trust, Night Shelter, Freebridge Community Housing, Broadland Housing and other partners worked incredibly hard together to help to get people off the streets and into safe accommodation.

“Now we need to take further action to help eradicate rough-sleeping and I met the Minister earlier this month to champion this bid for longer term accommodation.

North West Norfolk MP James Wild asking Prime Minister Boris Johnson about the prospect of a nursing college in King's Lynn at PMQs on September 9. (42921661)
North West Norfolk MP James Wild asking Prime Minister Boris Johnson about the prospect of a nursing college in King's Lynn at PMQs on September 9. (42921661)

"This funding will help people in West Norfolk to turn around their lives through the Housing First model that provides vital additional support, as well as other flats for people moving from hostels.”

Two proposals were submitted. The first is to provide 10 move on flats, by partner Broadland Housing Association, who will manage the accommodation for people leaving emergency accommodation or supported housing.

There will be dedicated support for those accommodated, with accommodation provided for the medium term until more permanent accommodation can be secured. This proposal will help release the emergency and supported housing for those in crisis now including those who may otherwise be rough sleeping.

The second proposal was an initiative for people who have higher support needs and may have had a pattern of rough sleeping over a number of years. Under a model called ‘Housing First’ it is planned that a number of units of accommodation (up to six) will be provided Broadland Housing by March 2021 with a high level of support provided for a medium to long term.

Mr Lawrence added: “Housing First is an internationally recognised based model of housing and support for those with chronic housing, health and social care needs. Housing First has been shown to be effective in supporting people with histories of street homelessness, or other types of homelessness where contact with services has been unsuccessful in breaking the cycle of instability.

"This will focus on the most complex and entrenched rough sleepers and will provide valuable resource in terms of intensive support, ending their rough sleeping and sustaining accommodation.”



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