LHF has awarded HOPE Worldwide £25,000 for their Two Step programme, helping people without priority status to access accommodation in the private sector and supported housing. We asked their Director of Homeless Services, Rob Payne, to give us some examples of the people they have worked with.
The Two Step scheme creates additional housing capacity by accessing the private rented sector. We can do this thanks to the positive relationships with agents and landlords that we have developed over many years. Landlords often offer us suitable accommodation without asking for rent in advance or deposit. We work with people experiencing street homelessness and those sofa surfing or in temporary accommodation – by housing those in hostels we help them get their own place and also free up valuable space for others who need it.
Here are the stories of two of the people we have worked with:
Sonia became homeless following a bereavement. After her husband died, she felt very isolated and moved to London to stay with a relative. After a few weeks, she was asked to move out and eventually ended up in a shelter. However, she was still striving to make things better for herself and didn’t lose hope. She had found a job just as she was being referred to Hope. Our team listened to her story, talked about what she could do and how we could help, and supported her in looking for a room. She found one herself and we used the LHF funding to pay the rent in advance and deposit. She was very grateful for the encouragement and guidance she received, which helped her make a new start in London. She is very happy with her new room and new job.
Maria is a migrant in her 60s who does not speak much English. She has been sofa surfing in-between times of housing provided by work, mainly live-in childcare roles. She has not had her own accommodation since her arrival in the UK in 2009. The pandemic has affected the need for her job. One of our team was able to support her in her native language and we were able to match her with a good landlord in a flat she felt was perfect for her needs. She is very happy and feels it is a place she can finally settle down in.
By working in partnership with LHF we will be able to expand the services to more people in need.
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For more information about HOPE Worldwide go to https://www.hopeworldwide.org.uk/