A NEW task force is set to be launched to help prevent rough sleeping in Worcestershire after the county secured nearly £400,000 in Government funding.
Worcester City Council joined forces with other councils across the county, along with West Mercia Police and the Maggs Day Centre to successfully apply for the £390,000 grant from the Department for Communities and Local Government.
It’s hoped the cash will prevent an estimated 200 people from becoming long-term rough sleepers over the next two years, by giving them access to a wide range of support to help turn their lives around.
The grant will pay for seven dedicated staff to run a county-wide No First Night Out Taskforce, which will bring together experts in tackling rough sleepers’ needs from local authorities, police, paramedics, local NHS Trusts and voluntary partners.
One of the task force’s main priorities will be to work closely with private and social landlords to help identify people struggling to maintain their tenancy, either for financial or other reasons.
Tenants will then be offered advice and support to help tackle their issues, increasing the chances of them being able to stay in their homes.
Nina Warrington, Head of Strategic Housing at Worcester City Council, said: “Our primary aim in Worcestershire is to step in and provide support at an early stage, to minimise the risk of local people losing the roof over their head in the first place.
“This funding will make a significant difference to the level of support we can offer, helping more people to turn their back on rough sleeping for good.”