'Crash pads' among projects to get share of homeless cash
HUNDRED of thousands of pounds is being pumped in to Tamworth over the next three years to help prevent homelessness.
Almost half a million pounds will be invested into various projects, after council bosses agreed to release the funds at a meeting of the Cabinet last Wednesday (May 30).
"Losing your home clearly has devastating impacts on people and their families. We want to develop our projects and initiatives even further to help prevent homelessness in Tamworth," explained Councillor Michael Greatorex, head of housing.
"By supporting people before they become homeless - and working with people to let them know what support is available – we will hopefully be able to prevent the stress and disruption often associated with being homeless."
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Projects lined-up to help prevent homelessness will include "crash pads" and overnight stops, education, repossession prevention, debt advice and a bond scheme.
The crash pad and overnight stops will offer short term emergency accommodation and support for young people.
The homeless education project will provide young people with assistance and advice on housing issues.
A repossession prevention fund will be set up to provide interest-free loans between £1,000 and £5,000 to help homeowners pay mortgages or rent arrears.
The Citizens Advice Bureau is on hand to offer debt advice.
And a bond scheme will support private sector tenants with deposits.
"Investing in homelessness prevention projects not only has a positive impact on people, but also on council resources," Cllr Greatorex added.
Figures show that in 2007/8, £186,968 was spent on bed and breakfast accommodation. But homelessness prevention measures introduced more recently revealed that in 2010/11, this had been reduced to £28,798. Council bosses aim to build on this success.
The projects will be run by the borough council's strategic housing team, in conjunction with other organisations who offer schemes to prevent homelessness.