City Council extends scheme to support rough sleepers following success

    MK City Council is extending a contract to continue supporting former rough sleepers and ensure they don’t end up back on the streets.

    Milton Keynes City Council's ‘Housing First’ programme aims to get rough sleepers into accommodation and provide support to help them work through the often complex reasons they became homeless in the first place.

    The programme has helped more than 150 people in the last three years.

    MK City Council is now making a decision to approve a six month extension of the contract on 14 November. During that time, further long-term initiatives for rough sleepers will be considered.

    The City Council’s provides vital services for people sleeping rough or those at risk of homelessness.

    Earlier this year, a brand new shelter in Central Milton Keynes in the former bus station

    The new shelter can provide overnight accommodation and support services for up to 18 people who otherwise would be sleeping rough.

    Since opening in June, the shelter has led to secure homes for 30 rough sleepers, with nearly 90 people using the shelter.

    Former rough sleepers stay for a short period before accessing further assistance.

    A recent review by the team showed that 24 people were sleeping rough in Milton Keynes, which is fewer than the number of beds available through the City Council’s provision, meaning everyone needing a bed could be found one.

    The City Council says that everyone found sleeping rough is offered accommodation and support. Only one person took up the offer, but the outreach team continue to make daily rounds to offer support.

    Cabinet Member for Adults, Housing and Healthy Communities, Cllr Emily Darlington said: “It’s essential that we continue to provide the right level of support for people to ensure they don’t fall back onto the streets. Providing long-term support is a critical part of the work that we do and gives people a chance at living a healthy and happy life.

    “No one in MK needs to be sleeping rough and our outreach team is out daily encouraging people to take up offers of accommodation. We’ll continue offering both accommodation and support to end rough sleeping for good in our city.”

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