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HomeHarrow CouncilFormer rough sleep picks up keys to new flat in Harrow

Former rough sleep picks up keys to new flat in Harrow

A former homeless person from Harrow has been given their own set of keys to start a new life in their own one-bedroom flat, thanks to a GLA grant.

Harrow Council have purchased nine one-bedroom flats, to be allocated to rough sleepers with complex needs. Harrow Council’s Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme (RSAP) was awarded £1,350,000 of capital funding by the GLA, with which it bought the one-bedroom flats in Harrow.

The GLA also gave revenue funding of £315k to provide specialist support to the residents for the next two years. It’s all part of the Harrow Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme (RSAP), funded by the Greater London Authority (GLA).

The flats are designed as long-term ‘next steps accommodation’ and will be allocated by the Outreach Team to rough sleepers, who will receive specialist counselling and support, say Harrow Council.

Having a secure home provides a stable base from which other issues can be addressed  and using the ‘Housing First’ model, the home is provided straight away to the rough sleeper, along with a comprehensive programme of wraparound support.

Former rough sleep picks up keys to new flat in Harrow Harrow Online
New kitchen. Credit: Harrow Council

Previously the traditional route has been some form of hostel or other temporary accommodation with support interventions, to get the client “accommodation ready”. This new approach goes straight for a settled housing solution. Clients may currently be sleeping rough or have complex needs such as drugs, and alcohol dependency, experience of domestic abuse or other forms of abuse and might have been unsuccessful in previous housing solutions.

Councillor Mina Parmar, Cabinet member for Housing at Harrow Council, said: “Harrow has considerably expanded it’s rough sleeping provision. We’ve implemented an outreach and rough sleeping team and more collaborative working with partners such as Firm Foundation. We are pleased to now be able to make extra provision for those rough sleepers that we identify with complex needs, through these nine properties.”