Chichester District Council applied for the funding as part of the Government's Next Steps Accommodation Programme. The programme offers two types of funding to prevent rough sleepers who have been rehomed during the coronavirus pandemic from returning to the streets. The first is to provide interim accommodation this financial year, while the second type is capital funding to be used for securing additional long-term accommodation for those being accommodated. The council worked with local homeless charity Stonepillow on successful bids for both types of funding.

At its meeting on Tuesday 8 December, Chichester District Council's Cabinet agreed that just over £32,000 should be used towards meeting the on-going costs of providing temporary accommodation to keep rough sleepers off the streets during the pandemic. 

The remaining £28,000 will go to Stonepillow to extend their Housing First team. This is a project that provides support to the most vulnerable rough sleepers, by enabling them to set up a new home for life and access the wider services that they need. The aim is to integrate people into the community and help them to build a new and sustainable independent life.

"Preventing homelessness and rough sleeping is a priority for our council and we are pleased that our bids to the Next Steps Accommodation were successful," says Councillor Alan Sutton, Cabinet Member for Housing, Communications, Licensing and Events at Chichester District Council. "The number of rough sleepers in our district is now lower than it has been for many years. A number of those who we have accommodated have been doing really well, and quite simply, their lives have been transformed. We are continuing to do all we can and we are working with other local agencies and partners to ensure that no-one has to sleep rough in our district."

Date of release: 8 December 2020

Reference: 3954