Homelessness charity HullHARP has funded a new post at Emmaus Hull and East Riding, to help sustain the reduction in rough sleeping achieved during the coronavirus lockdown.
A the start of lockdown, in response to the dangers Covid-19 presents to vulnerable people, measures were put in place by Hull City Council to house all of the city’s rough sleepers.
Emmaus Hull & East Riding’s Rough Sleeper Outreach Team, which is funded by the council, completed an exercise to contact all rough sleepers and send them to the safe accommodation being offered.
The exercise was a success, only a very small number of those most hard to engage with declined the security of short-term emergency accommodation.
In the last couple of months, the number of homeless people sleeping on the city’s streets has been the lowest recorded for about a decade.
As lockdown begins to ease slightly, the situation is now presenting further opportunities to support the city’s rough sleepers.
All homeless people successfully housed by Hull City Council under temporary measures will now also be offered support and move-on accommodation by the council.
The new full-time Sustainable Shelter Coordinator, funded by HullHARP at Emmaus, will concentrate on supporting those most at risk of returning to living on the streets, working with individuals intensively, in the hope of sustaining positive outcomes for these vulnerable people.
Kelly Finnis, Director at Emmaus Hull and East Riding, said: “Firstly, we’d like to thank HullHARP for this generous offer. During this global pandemic, charities like our own are facing substantial financial losses. This funding will go a long way towards making a huge difference.
“As a city we are dynamic in our approaches to reducing rough sleeping, and city-wide partners continue to work closely together to deliver a variety of solutions to meet a diverse range of needs. This newly funded post will work collectively with those in temporary accommodation in Hull & the East Riding, our existing Outreach teams, and our many partners, to secure longer-term solutions. Thank you once again to HullHARP for coming forward and making this happen.”
HullHARP Chair, Sandy Smith, said: “Our Trustees have been following the work the Outreach Team at Emmaus have been undertaking over recent months. One of the issues we identified was a shortfall in intensive work with those rough sleepers who have been housed through the Council. We believe this is a good time for an intervention to break the cycle, and prepare long-term rough sleepers finally to take up the offers of accommodation made to them. Emmaus have done a great job in supporting these people, and with this donation hopefully it will ease the pressure they are under and make a real difference in the longer term.”
Emmaus Hull & East Riding supports formerly homeless people by giving them a home, meaningful work and training in a social enterprise, and an opportunity to regain lost self-esteem to help rebuild their lives. The charity also runs the Rough Sleeper Outreach Service for Hull & East Riding, alongside various charitable enterprises.
[Jerome Whittingham – editor HULL IS THIS]