By Jon Lord, Chair of GMHP and CEO of Bolton at Home
“The Greater Manchester Housing First pilot has recently supported its 250th person into their own safe and secure home – and the Greater Manchester Housing Providers have been with them every step of the way.
The fantastic headline statistics from the end of year two bear this out – 257 homeless people supported into a home, 139 people housed for six months or more and a tenancy sustainment rate of 89%. A phenomenal achievement.
Strength to strength
Despite the pandemic, the pilot has gone from strength to strength and is proving not only that the model works at scale, but that the Housing First pilots should be made permanent.
The Greater Manchester Housing Providers (GMHP) partners involved have played a key role in this success. Pledging their commitment to provide the homes that are essential for the provision of the Housing First service, GMHP have worked hand in glove with all 10 Local Authorities and the Housing First project partners.
Accommodation offers are the lifeblood of the pilot’s success. Of the 257 homeless people that have been rehoused through GM Housing First, the vast majority have been placed in a home provided by the GMHP partners who have volunteered to pledge properties to the pilot.
It is far from a case of any home will do. Aligning with one of the key principles of the model – namely choice and control – GMHP has been crucial to the delivery of best outcomes for the people supported through Housing First. They have provided a variety of accommodation across the region and they understand that the right type of home, coupled with the right location, is a vital component of tenancy sustainment.
The GMHP providers have demonstrated their flexibility and gone the extra mile to offer people homes that meet their specific needs and are in the right area for them, close to family or existing networks and support services. People can choose from houses right across Greater Manchester, not just from one local authority area, to give every GM Housing First tenancy its very best chance of success.
Property pledges exceeded
GMHP members ForHousing, Jigsaw, Onward, Trafford Housing Trust, Bolton at Home, Great Places, Northwards and Wythenshawe CHG have all exceeded their property pledges over the past two years, so a huge thank you to them.
Stakeholders can’t work in isolation when it comes to tackling significant Greater Manchester-wide issues, and the commitment, flexibility and partnership working GMHP have demonstrated in support of GM Housing First, and the impact we have helped deliver, is something we can all be extremely proud of.
And it is, of course, something that will continue during this third and final year of the pilot. A huge well done to all involved because together, we are making a difference.”