This International Women’s Day, we wanted focus on an SHP service that works directly with women. We have recognised the importance of addressing needs that can be unique to women facing homelessness. Many women in these circumstances have faced huge challenges and pressures in their lives and their experiences have left them vulnerable to domestic abuse and other traumas.

We are now one year into running Project Kali. It’s a female-focused service for women who experience homelessness and have a history of offending. The project operates on the principles of the Housing First model and responds directly to women’s complex needs. Its aims are threefold:

  1. To ensure that women with multiple complex needs including a history of offending can access secure housing enabling them to address their support needs.

  2. To ensure that there is a tailored offer of support that caters for women with complex needs and a history of offending.

  3. To ensure that learning is shared from this project to further increase the understanding of the issues facing women with multiple complex needs and what appropriate support provision needs to be in place to address them.

The service offers wrap-around help to clients. This intensive support gives them the best chance of gaining independence, sustaining their tenancy and breaking their cycle of homelessness.

In its first year, Project Kali has supported 15 clients into secure accommodation. It’s hoping to build on this success over the next two years.

“It’s been amazing to work on Project Kali – women’s homelessness looks very different to men’s and services have often not been designed with women in mind. I’ve loved having the time and space to get to know the wonderful women I’m supporting, build a relationship with them and have the flexibility and time to ask them what they want and how they want our work together to look like without putting demands on them or having conditions of engagement – this is often the first time they’ve been asked by professionals what they want and it’s so simple but it really works.” Project Kali worker