People facing multiple disadvantages will be supported through the £64m government programme, ‘Changing Futures’, which aims to help them rebuild their lives.
The Changing Futures programme will provide funding to 15 local areas across England over the next three years for the support and treatment of adults facing a combination of homelessness, substance misuse, poor mental health, domestic abuse, or contact with the criminal justice system.
Delivered in partnership with The National Lottery Community Fund, the scheme aims to provide better co-ordinated support by joining up public and voluntary services to allow local authorities to take a person-centred approach to tackling disadvantage.
Minister for rough sleeping and housing, Eddie Hughes, said: ‘Our ground-breaking programme with the National Lottery Community Fund will help the most vulnerable in our society, giving them the tools they need to turn their lives around.
‘By providing specialist, joined up support we can create long-lasting change, helping these people reach their full potential and build a brighter future.’
Examples of the work Changing Futures is expected to fund include helping rough sleepers get registered with GPs, outreach teams to help sex workers build a new life, employment skills and training, and new support pathways to help people with learning difficulties access local services.
The 15 local areas involved will tailor support to each individual and work will vary depending on the location, for example in Bristol people with lived experiences of issues such as homelessness or substance abuse will advise support services to help people facing these issues to build employment skills.
A number of the areas selected for the Changing Futures programme have previously received funding from The National Lottery Community Fund’s Fulfilling Lives programme, which focused on improving support for vulnerable people.
Chair of The National Lottery Community Fund, Blondel Cluff, said: ‘The National Lottery-funded Fulfilling Lives programme demonstrated clearly how vulnerable people facing multiple disadvantages can play an active role in shaping the support services they rely upon, positively impacting their own lives and those of the local communities of which they are a part.
‘We are delighted to align and collaborate with the government on this important, shared objective through this new jointly-funded programme, that will support some of the most vulnerable members of our society to use their voices to help design and deliver the services they need so that they and their communities can thrive together.’
This comes after the London Councils announced a leadership role to end rough sleeping.
Photo by Jonathan Rados