'Housing First gave me a new start'
A client from SHP’s Lottery-funded Fulfilling Lives in Islington and Camden (FLIC) project appeared on BBC Breakfast to speak out in support of an innovative approach to tackling homelessness.
Wayne, 54, told of the progress he has made since being given a stable home, thanks to the FLIC projects’ ‘Housing First’ approach to working with people with complex needs.
Housing First gives people who have experienced long term homelessness their own permanent accommodation, giving them the security and stability they need to break the cycle and turn their lives around.
During the interview, Wayne said: “It’s the only scheme I’ve been offered which has been realistic. It’s helped me to build my self-esteem and tackle my mental health issues, and it’s acted as a deterrent to stop crime and drugs. It’s a wonderful thing to have.
"Having a postcode means you belong. For 35 years, I was just in the way, but I feel like part of society again'
Wayne’s TV appearance highlighted a new report by the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ), which is now recommending Housing First as a way to tackle rough sleeping and homelessness in Britain.
The CSJ is calling on the government to adopt Housing First nationwide by investing £110m to secure homes in the private rented sector for those who have suffered recurrent homelessness. The thinktank argues that the Government could make substantial savings.
Lucy Watson, SHP’s Fulfilling Lives in Islington and Camden Deputy Manager who appeared alongside Wayne on the BBC Breakfast sofa, added: “I don’t think it works for everyone, but part of Housing First is providing personalised support, recognising everyone as an individual. It’s more than just a home and an address, but personalising the support to their needs.”