When people talk about homelessness, hostel accommodation is a familiar option as well as services for people sleeping rough – but what happens when people are ready to move on somewhere else, or if hostel accommodation isn’t suitable for them?
How does it work?
St Martins lease a number of houses from Norwich City Council, and sometimes private rental, to provide a medium-term housing option for people who have experienced homelessness in Norwich and the surrounding areas. While they are living there, they receive regular support from a dedicated member of the Community Housing team who helps them to address the issues that led to their homelessness. This could include physical and mental health, relationships, budgeting. There are 50 bed spaces as part of this service and people stay for up to two years.
In addition, the team is responsible for temporary accommodation – this is for people who have submitted a homelessness application with Norwich City Council and need to be housed while their application is being processed. There are 20 bed spaces in temporary accommodation, people can stay for as long as it takes for Norwich City Council to assess their homelessness. The team works effectively with the council to quickly move people into safe, secure place to live.
Lance Pratt who manages the Community Housing team said, “I’m incredibly proud of the team. Between us we support 70 people living in the community – we all pitch in and make a difference in the lives of the people we support every day. It works because of the way referrals into the service are handled; we provide the right support at the right time for people, and we give people choice as much as possible about where they live and the assistance they receive.”