Council gains £340,000 boost to tackle homelessness in Wigan Borough

Photo of the Homeless Champions
Photo of the Homeless Champions launched last month with Wigan Council's Chief Executive Donna Hall and Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham.

Wigan Borough is set to receive a £340,000 boost to help address homelessness and rough sleeping.

The funding from the Government’s rough sleeping initiative grant will help Wigan Council put in place new frontline measures to prevent rough sleeping.

The measures include:

·       Help fund the operation of two overnight accommodation and multi-agency support hubs in Wigan and Leigh.

·       Expansion of a ‘No first night out’ service for people at risk of rough sleeping.

·       Practical support for people using emergency accommodation to help them successfully move to permanent accommodation.

·       Extensive outreach provision covering evenings and weekends with people on the street.

·       Creation of a new rough sleeping coordinator post to ensure a plan is in place for each individual.

·       Support diversionary activities for people at risk of homelessness to improve skills, confidence and resilience

Wigan Council is committed to acting early to prevent homelessness and works closely with the community and private sector on the issue.

In the past year Wigan Council has prevented more than 5,000 cases of potential homelessness.

Councillor Terry Halliwell, cabinet member for housing and welfare, said: “This funding allocation is very welcome and will help us implement some excellent new initiatives in Wigan borough which will impact directly on the frontline.

“We are committed to helping every individual who is at risk of homelessness and the prevention of rough sleeping is a particular priority.

“These very practical measures will have a direct impact on reducing rough sleeping in the borough and we hope they will see tangible results particularly in the run up to winter.”

In total 83 councils received £30m in funding from the Government with Wigan being one of only three authorities in Greater Manchester to be successful in the bidding process.

Last month Wigan Council launched its own Homeless Champions scheme which will see trained volunteers checking people on the streets daily to get a better understanding of their circumstances and to provide more support.

If you see a homeless person on the streets, email [email protected] with as much information as possible, including location.