The latest results of a pilot scheme, initiated by In Control,
which offered personalised budgets to rough sleepers have shown it
to be a remarkable success.
Based in London, the scheme gave 22 long-term homeless people
personal budgets of up to £3,000 and the support to find new lives
off the street. The results have exceeded expectations and the
report argues that the personalised approach should be expanded to
other rough sleepers in the city and beyond.
The report 'Providing
personalised support to rough sleepers' gives a final evaluation of
the project, which is due to finish this month. It shows the pilot
to be a remarkable success and notes positive outcomes for many of
those involved. 17 of the homeless are now in housing and 14 have
spent more than six months under the same roof.
In 2008, In Control successfully argued for the inclusion of
personal budgets in the Government's rough sleeper's strategy 'No
One Left Out', on which this pilot scheme is based. Since then,
supported by Dept of Communities and Local Government, In Control
has worked in partnership with The City of London Corporation and
London based charity, Broadway, to explore ways that personal
budgets might help long-term rough sleepers to find a new life off
A steering group including representation and support from In
Control oversaw the project and met once a month to provide advice
and monitor progress.
People at risk of sleeping rough or on the street have diverse
needs and these individual budgets were piloted as a way to help
find new and creative solutions. The strategy targeted long-term
rough sleepers who had refused standard offers of support and had
poor relations with outreach teams. The budgets were used to fund
items including clothes, caravan accommodation, furniture and
further education college courses.
Participants were not told how much money was available in their
personal budget. Instead, they were asked what they wanted in order
to help them. Total spending in the first year averaged £794 per
person, compared with the £3,000 allowed.
The personalised approach brought elements of choice and control
not always provided by standard support and the success has helped
bring wider coverage to the project.
The project exceeded the expectations of all involved, with both
participants and professionals agreeing that the approach could
work with other rough sleepers.
The pilot will continue until the end of this month (March
2011), after which it will become a mainstream part of the work of
Broadway's outreach team in the City of London.
John Waters, of In Control, initiated and supported the
project. You can contact John at email@example.com.
Both the summary report and full evaluation of the work are
A presentation about this project made at In Control's
Big Event 2010 is available to watch on the related pages