VOICES legacy: ‘Housing First’
Author: Steve Willis, Project Officer, VOICES
The legacy project working towards mainstreaming Housing First in Stoke-On-Trent has made good progress so far. The project has been extended by a year. We have supported the Centre for Health And Development (CHAD) to evaluate the service. Watch this space for their findings!
Over the past couple of months the Project Team has been focused on writing recommendations which we hope will inform a final service specification which will aim to secure incorporation of Housing First into the local system after VOICES has ended in March 2022.
As well as drawing on our local learning, the recommendations we have written closely follow guidance from Housing First England and specifically the seven principles they state that a Housing First service should follow, based on the evidence of what works for people experiencing multiple and complex needs:
1. People have a right to a home
2. Flexible support is provided for as long as it is needed
3. Housing and support are separated
4. Individuals have choice and control
5. An active engagement approach is used
6. The service is based on people’s strengths, goals and aspirations
7. A harm reduction approach is used
Over the coming months we will look at these principles more closely and examine how they inform the support that Housing First offers and why they should be followed.
To find more information about the Housing First model of support you can go to Housing First England’s website: https://hfe.homeless.org.uk/