Housing projects saved our lives’

Residents of two government-funded supported housing schemes have reported high levels of satisfaction, with some claiming the projects had saved their lives, according to a major study.

An evaluation of the Safer Communities Housing Fund, which supported groups such as young people at risk and offenders, and a separate pilot programme supporting teenage mothers found levels of crime in accommodation-based schemes had reduced substantially.

Those in drug and alcohol schemes reported “considerable success in reducing the use of their main problematic substance”. And most users of floating support, where services are not tied to specific accommodation, said they felt more confident about themselves and their future.

But the study, by the University of Bristol, also found widespread shortage of accommodation to move on to and suggested there was a tension between the flexibility required in supporting vulnerable people and levels of bureaucracy surrounding the schemes, in terms of reporting requirements placed on providers.

An Evaluation of the Safer Communities Supported Housing Fund and the Approved Development Programme Pilots for Teenage Mothers



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