By: Pramod Thomas
London mayor Sadiq Khan announced £2 million additional funding support to charities and support services to help 500 rough sleepers off the streets in the city.
Khan made the announcement after visiting the pan-London Youth Homelessness Accommodation Hub in Islington.
Since 2016, the mayor helped 13,500 people off the streets by City Hall commissioned services.
Data from the Combined Homelessness and Information Network (CHAIN) revealed that rough sleeping in London has increased by a staggering 21 per cent year-on-year.
Charity partners, including St Mungo’s and Thames Reach will receive funding to deliver a range of support including provision of urgent accommodation and dedicated support to find long-term routes out of homelessness and support those sleeping rough on London’s transport network, with increased outreach on London’s night buses and the night tube.
The funding for the StreetLink and Clearing House services will support their vital work identifying people sleeping rough and bringing them in to support services.
The Islington hub accommodates up to 26 young people aged 18-24 in short-stay accommodation, during which time they will receive personalised, holistic support from charity partners Depaul and New Horizon Youth Centre to prepare them for independent living and to re-establish their lives away from homelessness.
Khan, said: “Whilst I’m extremely proud of the huge progress City Hall has made so far helping people sleeping rough off our streets, there is still a long way to go to end homelessness in the capital for good.
“This is a cause I strongly believe in, which is why I’m awarding a further £2m to continue the important and transformative work that St Mungo’s and Thames Reach provide on a daily basis.
“It’s imperative the Government does more to end the root causes of homelessness and I will continue to call for greater accountability from our leaders on this issue as I work to build a better, safer, more prosperous London for everyone.”
Emma Haddad, chief executive of St Mungo’s, said: “We will be able to continue providing emergency accommodation as well as support, so that people in London don’t return to the streets. This funding from the London Mayor means that we can help more people on that journey into a place they can call home.”
Bill Tidnam, chief executive of Thames Reach, said: “At a time of significant financial pressure, the need for our services is greater than ever and this funding will enable us to ensure that people are located and supported into realistic and suitable routes out of street homelessness.”