Everyone needs a safe, warm place they can call home. Home is more than a physical place to live. It’s where we feel secure, have roots and a sense of belonging. Home supports our physical and emotional health and wellbeing and to be without one seems unthinkable. We think that the best way to prevent homelessness is to stop it happening in the first place.
Our homelessness prevention efforts were launched in October this year (2019) through our campaign Stop it – Before it Starts.
We know from experience our residents benefit from this approach; it helps reduce their worry and stress. Preventing their homelessness, can also avoid them having to make multiple housing moves or make difficult decisions such as living out of the borough which can disrupt family social networks and mean children have to change school – all which can adversely impact on their health and wellbeing.
Domestic violence and abuse can affect anyone. It can cause family breakdowns and, in worst case scenarios, children may be present in the home when abuse takes place. If anyone is experiencing domestic violence or abuse there is no need to wait for an emergency to seek help. If domestic abuse is happening, it’s important to tell someone and remember you’re not alone – you can contact us to get support.
Support is also available from Refuge, the National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247. Calls are free and in confidence 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
The number of people who are rough sleeping or homeless is ever-changing. However, whilst the council has low numbers (20 on average) we are not complacent as one person sleeping on the streets is one too many. The council works all year round seeking to identify and work with rough sleepers providing them with housing and practical support where this is needed. If anyone sees someone sleeping rough, they can they report it in the first instance via the Streetlink website www.streetlink.org.uk or call 0300 500 0914.
With changes in income or welfare benefits being cut or reduced we know that residents can sometimes struggle with managing their finances – including paying their rent. That’s why we think it is important that taking the time to act early and getting help to manage finances better can really pay off. If you’re worried about debt or struggling to pay your rent, contact us. If you are facing eviction or repossession or need to speak to us urgently please call us on 020 8583 2888.