Kingston Council secures further funding to support rough sleepers
Kingston Council has been awarded more than £1.2 million in the latest round of funding from the government's Rough Sleeping Initiative
The money will help the council to continue to meet its priorities to help rough sleepers off the streets and provide them with support, building on the 'Everyone In' response to the COVID-19 emergency in March 2020.
Since the pandemic hit last year, Kingston Council has brought 180 rough sleepers and those at imminent risk of rough sleeping off the streets into emergency accommodation, using local hotels and private rented properties to support the effort.
In addition, Kingston Council has also been awarded £1.5 million by the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Greater London Authority to find suitable properties and identify support for rough sleepers. The council has been working with partners across the Borough to ensure the safety of those sleeping rough during the crisis, and has developed new working relationships across health and social services to meet their support needs, both now and into the future. Support services have been commissioned through partnerships with Kingston Churches Action on Homelessness and SPEAR London.
Lorna Brooke, Corporate Head of Community Housing for Kingston Council said:
"The response has been testament to the strength of partnership working. There has been a huge amount of work done by our staff and partners to meet the challenges of people who were sleeping rough and were on the streets when the pandemic struck. We quickly moved to ensure there was a room for everyone who needed it and our staff and support agencies ensured they were looked after and supported. It has been a challenge which everyone involved has risen to and has been a huge success."
Councillor Emily Davey, Portfolio Holder for Housing said:
"The response to this emergency by the council and its partners has been exceptional. This new funding for the Rough Sleeper Initiative for 2021/2022 will allow those in need to continue to receive support and somewhere to live as we emerge from the pandemic - and that includes anyone who finds themselves new to living on the streets. It is also vital we continue to work hard to reduce the numbers of rough sleepers from our streets still further, and this will remain a priority."