SERVICES helping people who are facing homelessness due to domestic abuse, violence or exploitation have been awarded more than £300,000 in Government funding.
Leicester is one of 12 council areas across the UK taking part in the Respite Rooms Trial Programme – a 12-month project designed to fund emergency short-term accommodation and expert support for victims of violence and abuse.
The £335,000 pilot scheme will enable the city council to bring together elements of its rough sleeping work services and domestic and sexual abuse support, in order to strengthen the services on offer, and to explore different ways of providing the best help to people.
Leicester deputy city mayor responsible for domestic abuse services, Cllr Sarah Russell, said: “The Respite Room programme will give us a unique opportunity to pilot a new way of identifying and meeting the needs of those vulnerable to rough sleeping due to domestic abuse.
“As well as allowing us to enhance our current provision, it will provide us with further insight into how our services could be shaped as we go forwards."
Leicester assistant city mayor for housing, Cllr Elly Cutkelvin, added: “This is an exciting development that demonstrates our commitment to helping some of our most vulnerable residents - often referred to as the hidden homeless - and we look forward to seeing the difference this pilot can make to the people of Leicester.”
Nationally, the £3.7m funding will create a total of 140 bed spaces and support an estimated 1,100 people over the trial period.
The programme will provide single-sex spaces for victims alongside specialist support from homelessness and charities tackling violence against women and girls.
As part of the programme, people will be supported to access suitable longer-term safe accommodation.