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Cash injection provides hope for homeless
8:10pm Sunday 2nd September 2012 in News
A NEW homeless centre is on the way to Worcester – as council chiefs celebrated a £254,000 government grant to help get people off the streets.
Worcester City Council has been handed the windfall to help reduce the number of rough sleepers at night.
Bosses have revealed they want to create a ‘places for change’ centre, which would operate in a similar way to an advice bureau.
Places for change bases have already been set up elsewhere in the country, and are refuges where homeless people can get medical advice, play sport, get help on rehousing and qualifications, and in some cases stay overnight temporarily.
The authority has put aside £50,000 to help identify and support the purchase of a building in Worcester to house the centre. Details of the exact location of the building and the activities in it will be published in a report and put in front of the decision-making Tory cabinet later this year.
The £254,000 is a further one-off payment from the Department for Communities and Local Government.
It has been handed to the Guildhall , but must be spent across Worcestershire and Herefordshire to tackle homelessness. A plan will be drawn up for how the money will be spent, based along the Government’s ‘no second night’ out policy, which aims to ensure all rough sleepers spend no more than one successive night on the streets. The issue was discussed during a meeting of the council’s scrutiny committee this week.
Nina Warrington, housing services manager at the city council, said: “This funding will help vital services which help prevent more people sleeping rough on the streets.”
A lot of the cash is expected to be spent on co-ordinating work between Herefordshire and Worcestershire so both areas share expertise and resources.
The cash boost comes only two weeks after St Paul’s Hostel, Tallow Hill, Worcester, won a £200,000 government grant to expand its’ outreach team across the county. Adrian Warburton, the manager, said the 46-bed facility was “constantly full” for most of the year and that demand was high all year round.