Help for long-term homeless people
Mike and Daniel are two of Gloucestershire’s long term homeless people who now have the support they need to leave rough sleeping behind.
Over the next three and a half years ‘ACTion Glos’ - a dedicated team run by the P3 Charity (People Potential Possibilities) - is working with up to 110 of the most vulnerable people in Gloucestershire. It is funded by £990k secured by Gloucestershire County Council, the Clinical Commissioning Group, and the six district councils.
Mike had been rough sleeping since April 2016, but couldn’t find homeless accommodation that would allow him to bring his dog. Supported by ACTion Glos, Mike and his four legged companion moved into shared accommodation initially and then onto independent housing a month later. Mike is now getting help with his addictions and aspires to train as an addictions support worker himself.
Daniel was released from prison with no accommodation. He was well known to homeless services and had not coped well with communal living in the past. With the help of ACTion Glos, Daniel moved into the charity’s accommodation and is now receiving the support he needs.
Cllr Colin Organ, cabinet member for housing at Gloucester City Council said: “Mike and Daniel are examples of two genuinely homeless people with complex needs who had struggled to find a way out of homelessness in the past. Their experience shows us what can be achieved with the right support.”
Cllr Kathy Williams, cabinet member for long term care at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “We need to help people break the cycle of repeat homelessness. This funding is bringing long-term rough sleepers into accommodation and supporting them to deal with complex issues that are often too overwhelming to face alone.”
P3’s Development Director, Gemma Bukel, stated: "There are a number of people sleeping rough across the county, or in and out of accommodation options, who have become entrenched in those lifestyles who need urgent support to get their lives back on track. We are confident that by maintaining intensive and relatively long-term support with individuals, and working closely with partners, the project will make positive and long-lasting changes to vulnerable people’s lives in our communities.”
P3’s ACTion Glos team of professional link-workers will include specialist substance misuse and training/employment workers seconded from local agencies ARA and CCP. The new service will be in addition to Gloucester City Council’s housing advice and homelessness team, and supported accommodation and community-based support services funded by Gloucestershire County Council.
Members of the public are still encouraged to refer people they believe to be rough sleeping to the outreach team via www.streetlink.org.uk, the Streetlink phone app, or 0300 500 0914.