Homelessness in Exeter – Context

Charities operating in Exeter who support homeless

 Exeter Community Initiatives http://www.eci.org.uk/ – Based at York Road ECI are an Exeter charity that have been going for over 20 years. Much of their core work is funded through donations to a share scheme or through grants from charitable trusts such as the Big Lottery Fund or local authorities such as Devon County Council. They also have contracts to run three  children’s centres in Exeter until 2017. ECI initially setup St Petrocks and Turntable Furniture project.

ECC Funding from April 2015 – £1,250 – to assist work around Soup Kitchens Meeting. This grant is coming to an end and will be part of the new Outreach Tender from October. Total: £1,250

St Petrocks http://stpetrocks.org.uk/Taken from Website – Originating as a community project providing humanitarian response to rough sleepers in the Exeter, the charity officially opened its doors in December 1994, having being given permission by the Central Parish of Exeter to adapt two thirds of St Petrock’s church for use as a homeless centre.

For over 20 years, St Petrock’s has been the first point of contact for people who are homeless, or vulnerably housed, in Exeter and surrounding areas. Our centre in Cathedral Yard is both the heart of our services and the gateway to specialist service providers.  It is unique in that it offers a comprehensive range of specialist services for people who are homeless, all under one roof.

Our work tackles not only the issues of homelessness but also the accompanying factors, such as crime, anti-social behaviour and wider social inclusion issues.

In 2014/15, a total of 1,666 people were supported through our services, from St Petrock’s centre, at HMP Exeter and in the community via the PORCH team.

The total cost of running these services runs at £500,000 pa on average and 94% of our income is spent on providing services which directly support our clients.  As a local charity, we are fortunate to have the support of the local community which provided some 32% of our income in 2014/15.

ECC Funding from April 2015 – £7,500 Prison Resettlement Worker (Homeless Prevention Grant); £6,000 Reconnection Fund (Local Welfare Support); £8,000 Health Fund (Exeter Board).

Total: £21,500

Community Housing Aidhttp://communityha.org.uk/ – Taken from website – CHA is a charity and we have been offering housing advice and support in Exeter and neighbouring areas since 1990.  We believe that everyone has the right to suitable, sustainable, secure and affordable housing.  We work with people who are in need of housing to enable them to find their own solutions, providing information and practical support.

We began life as a voluntary housing advice service, and have expanded the work that we do over the years to provide practical ways to help people to resolve their homelessness. On average, we work with around 1,000 people and households each year. Community Housing Aid is also a MINDFUL EMPLOYER® which is a Registered Trade Mark of Devon Partnership NHS Trust.

We currently support homeless and vulnerably housed people through the following three core projects:

Nightstop Devon – a same day emergency accommodation scheme for young people aged 16 – 25 in the homes of trained and approved volunteer hosts.

Resettlement Devon – helps ex-offenders and people with mental health problems to identify and access sustainable and suitable accommodation; and provides CASS, the Community Advice & Support Service, at Exeter Magistrates Court on Tuesdays each week.

Smartmove Devon – a private rented sector access scheme bringing homeless people and property owners together to create sustainable tenancies.

Bay 6 – a NEW pilot project that aims to ensure that no-one leaving hospital has to sleep rough across Devon and Torbay.

Single Homelessness Funding (ECC, EDDC, TDC, MDDC, Torbay) from April 2015 – £80,000 – Joint Contract with St Petrocks to deliver Offender Housing Resettlement Pilot Funded until May 2016. Total: £80,000

Citizens Advice Bureauwww.exetercab.org.ukAbout Exeter CAB

At Exeter Citizens Advice Bureau we can help you sort out your money, legal and other problems.

We can give you free, confidential, impartial and independent information and advice on a wide range of subjects including

  • benefits
  • employment
  • housing
  • debt
  • consumer rights
  • legal issues

And it’s not just advice. We campaign for change using your experiences to influence local and national policymakers and service providers to improve policies and services which aren’t working.

ECC & EDDC Funding from April 2015 – £9,000 (Homeless Prevention Grant) Court Desk; (Local Welfare Support) Total: £9,000

Homemakerhttp://www.homemakersw.org.uk/index.html – Homemaker Southwest is an independent charity, established in July 2001 and based in Devon. It emerged from an organisation known as the ‘Exeter Homemaker Project’, originally set up in 1991 to provide tenancy support services for offenders. As the organization has grown, the range of services we provide have been adapted to better meet the needs of the local population as a whole, enabling us to offer our services to all sections of the community.
Statement of Purpose
To enable people, especially those who are vulnerable, to set up, maintain, and sustain their homes, and thus prevent homelessness.
Aims of Homemaker
The primary purpose of Homemaker is to prevent homelessness and promote independence. We offer specialist advice and support to individuals and families who may be at risk of losing their

ECC Funding from April 2015 – £0 from homelessness. Part of EMAP which is funded through Local Welfare Support and is under review.

From October

Rough Sleepers Outreach – new provider – Information from website

ECC, EDDC and TDC funding from October 2015 – £37,474.09 per quarter – Total £150,000 per ye

Accommodation in Exeter and how it is funded

The national steer on homelessness is a reflection of the fact that no single organisation or community in Devon has all of the skills or resources needed to prevent it. Homelessness prevention therefore presents a challenge to all of Devon’s statutory organisations and communities, in terms of how they work together to achieve effective outcomes. Diagram 1 (below) is an illustration of Devon County Council (DCC) as just one partner contributing some quite specific skills and resources, into a much wider multi-agency network of skills and resources.

Screen shot 2015-12-26 at 08.40.00
Diagram 1: DCC as one contributor within a multi-agency partnership

The following update clarifies changes to accommodation providers since Devon County Council re-commissioned Homeless Prevention support services across Devon in April 2014. This only looks at changes which affect the Eastern HUB (Exeter, East Devon and Mid Devon) and those services which receive funding for support hours from Devon County Councils under its Contribution into Homelessness Prevention and Support for 16 and 17 Year Olds and 18+ Homeless Prevention services.

Background

In 2013 and due to procurement regulations, Devon County Council started the process of procuring the contracts for Homeless Prevention Support hours The changes to 18+ Homeless Prevention services took place earlier this year with contracts starting in April 2014 and the 16/17 Year Old Homeless Prevention Services followed shortly afterwards with contracts starting in June 2014.

The Homeless Prevention Services were broken down into 4 categories:

  • 18+ Homeless Prevention Support Hours
  • 16-17year olds Homeless Prevention support hours.
  • Domestic Abuse Homeless Prevention support hours
  • Ex-Offender Homeless Prevention Support
  • Accommodation costs will be funded by District Councils/housing benefit
  • The tender for support hours required providers to evidence their access to accommodation that Devon County Council doesn’t pay for.

Exeter, East Devon and Mid Devon Accommodation providers before 1st April 2014

Homeless Prevention Services Provider Number of units Service users
Gabriel House Shilhay Support 40 Male & Female 18-65 Complex needs
Esther Keychange 15 & 4 16+ single female complex needs
Friars Lodge Magna 7 Young mum/family support
Grapevine Chapter 1 10 Young mum/family support
Alexandra House Westcountry Housing Association 23 Single Homeless
Oakfields Stonham 13 Ex-offenders
YMCA YMCA 31 16-29 Single Homeless
Supported Temporary Accommodation (STA’s) Exeter City Council 19 Single Homeless and family support
Women’s Refuge SAFE Women fleeing domestic violence
Floating Support Sanctuary Supported Living Floating Support
Family Support in Housing Chapter 1 Floating Support
 
Young Person at Risk (YPAR) Provider Number of units Service users
Bethany House Westcountry Housing Association 13 YP Single Homeless Female only
Long Ragg (Axminster) Devon and Cornwall Housing Association (Independent Futures) 6 YP Single homeless
Foyer Raglan 36 YP Single Homeless
Hennis Project Magna Housing Association 18 YP Single Homeless
Supported Lodgings Young Devon 10 Exeter

(60 countywide)

YP Single Homeless
  

Exeter, East Devon and Mid Devon 18+ Homeless Prevention Services Eastern HUB after 1st April 2014

Support Provider Total hours of support provided per week to deliver Accommodation available for support Total Number of Units Service users
Sanctuary * 794 Queens Road

Trailways

Killarney

Red House

Crescent

Haven

Sandford Walk

 

 

STAR

 

Pinhoe Road

 

Floating Support

7

10

6

16

18

6

4

 

 

15

 

4

 

200 Hours

1st stage temp (ECC)

1st stage temp (ECC)

1st stage temp (ECC)

1st stage temp (ECC)

1st stage temp (ECC)

NSNO

Move on from Haven where permanent option is private rented

First Stage and Move-on

Single Female Shared House,

Referral route into Emergency Accommodation through Housing Options; Referral to STAR through SHOT; Floating Support direct referral to Sanctuary

 

BCHA 399 Gabriel House

Glendower Court

Oxford Road

Fernley

Thursby Walk

39

4

5

13

8

18-25 & complex needs

Gabriel House move on

Referral route through Young Persons Accommodation Forum

 

Exeter YMCA 217 YMCA St Davids Hill

 

 

New Court

Morley Road

Phillip Road

27

(31 in total, 4 left for YMCA use)

8

5

4

18-24 Year Olds – Referral route through Young Persons Accommodation Forum
Westward 150 Alexandra House 23 (10 ring fenced for 18 – 24 year olds)

Referral route through Young Persons Accommodation Forum and Eastern HUB referral to Alexandra House

* Queens Road & Trailways in house support but under sanctuary contract.

Main Changes

The key feature of change was Devon County Councils decision to commission support hours rather than buildings.   Following the tender, Providers can now use the support hours in any accommodation they have available to them.

        • The Eastern HUB housing accommodation options have been split between 18-24 year olds and 25+ & complex needs.
        • A Young Persons Accommodation Forum has been set up to look at accommodation options for 18- 24 year olds (open case or non priority cases). The following accommodation options are considered:
          – Nightstop
          – Amber
          -Alexandra House
          – YMCA- Sanctuary Supported Living – Floating Support
        • Referral process will be through Eastern HUB form sent to Jenny Lynch or Holly Leadbetter at YES Centre. Chris Stocks will chair the meetings.
        • Those of HIRA score under 10 private rented accommodation to be considered with floating support from Sanctuary Supported Living if needed
        • Clients scoring under 20 can be considered for Move-on Options (see Pathway) so long as provider agrees to referral.
        • For anyone scoring 25+ on the HIRA or scoring 4 or 5 in 3 or more categories a referral will be completed to go to the new Complex Needs Forum that will shortly be set up. The Complex Needs Forum will be:

– Monthly meetings
– HIRA score 25+, scores 4/5 in 3+ categories
– Consist of: Police, Mental Health, Probation, RISE, Safeguarding, Housing, Adult Care, Public Health
– Will also oversee MEAM (Making Every Adult Matter) cases

Homeless Prevention 16-17 Year olds Eastern HUB

      • The Peninsula Framework was used as Pre-qualifier to assure quality of services for children and in order for Providers to also accept Individual Placement Agreements via CYP Brokerage
      • The Homeless Prevention 16/17 support hours aim to support young people aged 16/17 to return home (if safe) or become independent by age 18.
      • Care leavers aged 18+ (whose status has been agreed with a social worker) can access the support provided by the Homelessness Prevention 16/17 contract if it is considered appropriate.  
Support Provider Total hours of support provided per week to deliver Accommodation available for support Total Number of Units Service users
Westward 60 Bethany House 13 16 / 17 Year Olds and Care leavers up to 25 if in Full Time Education
Young Devon 40 Supported Lodgings Placements 10 16 / 17 Year Olds and Care leavers up to 25 if in Full Time Education
Keychange 127.8 Esther 19 16 / 17 Year Olds and Care leavers up to 25 if in Full Time Education
Chapter 1 62 Grapevine? Pregnant careleavers, 16/17 pregnant year olds

 

      • Homeless Prevention Panel meets fortnightly to look at prioritising referrals for 16 / 17 year olds and Care Leavers. The following accommodation options are available:-
        • Esther
        • Bethany House
        • Grapevine
        • Supported lodgings
        • Night Stop
        • Exeter Foyer
      • All hours that have been contracted are for Floating Support so any unallocated hours can be used to support 16/17 olds in private tenancies or in emergency accommodation. If YP is nearly 18 then Eastern HUB form to be completed for consideration for resources through Young Persons Accommodation Forum.

Services no longer commissioned or remaining under review as a result of commissioning exercise

Due to the commissioning process some projects would not continue to provide support under the DCC Homeless Prevention Contract. This could have been due to Organisations taking the decision to change their business model and move to supporting eg. adults instead of young people or young people instead of adults; Organisation decision to withdraw from the market; Organisations not reaching the required standard; Organisations being good enough but not scoring high enough to be allocated hours as these were awarded to other providers who scored higher.

Transition plans were put in place with existing providers to ensure people were safe and appropriately supported through any contractual changes. Changes include:

Those Organisation that did not secure a contract were:-

      • Magna Housing Association – impact is Hennis Project will close end of August 2014. and Magna are currently exploring alternative options for Friars Lodge

Buildings that may face changes in use as a result of contract changes:

      • Chapter 1, Grapevine used to support 18 year olds single parents and has now secured hours under the 16-17 yr old Homeless Prevention Contract
      • Keychange – Esther Project – used to provide service to Single Homeless Vulnerable Women and has now secured support hours under the 16-17 yr old Homeless Prevention Contract
      • Exeter Foyer – Raglan – used to have exclusive Young Persons contract and now has zero hours 18+ contract and is working to get onto Peninsula Framework to accept children incare. In the meantime a transition plan can support YP to access the service.
      • Longragg – Independent Futures – EDDC decided this was a bulding they no longer wished to retain.

Services that fell outside of DCC HP tender and were commissioned through another route:

    • Oakfields Hostel is now commissioned through National Probation Services and access is managed through this route.
    • Domestic Abuse Support services contract awarded to Splitz with no accommodation provision

ExeterCouncil Resources Committee pays silent tribute to former Strategic Director, Hazel Ball

Tonight I chaired my first ever meeting of Exeter City Council’s Scrutiny Committee – Resources . Before the meeting proper got underway, I had a solemn duty to perform

I have the sad task of announcing the death of one of our former directors, Hazel Ball – who died on Saturday morning following a short illness.

She spent 35 years working for the local authority, joining in 1976 and working up through the ranks. She became Head of Environmental Health Services in 1996 and then a Strategic Director in 2001.

In 2012, she retired from the City Council as Director of Community and Environment.

But even in retirement Hazel continued to influence me personally.

Not only did I enjoy reading about here personal quest to find the best doughnuts in Exeter, she mentored me in the fine detail of the planning conditions of the Exeter Energy from Waste plant – her last comment to me as a Direct Message on Twitter was made only a few weeks ago.

In addition, I know she was a staunch supporter of Exeter CAB in her role of Trustee – and I know that she will be missed equally next door as she will be here in the Civic Centre.Donought

I invite you to join me in observing a minute’s silent reflection in respectful memory of Hazel.

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Hazel’s biography on the Exeter CAB website:

Hazel Ball

Vice chair
Became a trustee in: 1985
Chair of Advice Exeter

Being a trustee gives me an insight into how life is experienced by many Exonians especially when they are facing difficult times.

Trustees should bring their wider experience to the board to help the organisation. I have experience in management, including finance and staff management, along with strategic planning. I also have a good feel for the local government world and the interrelationships between the statutory and voluntary sectors.

I think the CAB is the source of free advice about anything and everything. The best thing about the CAB is the quality of the advice given which derives from the quality of the volunteers, the robust quality control and the training and information provided to the volunteers.

It would be great to see a future where funding was secure and we didn’t have to spend so much time chasing money!

Rather unusually, I spent my whole career with Exeter City Council. I have recently retired from my job as Director of Community and Environment. After leaving university with a biology degree, I joined the council as a trainee environmental health officer. I worked my way up to Head of Environmental Health Services and then to Director, retiring from my job as Director of Community and Environment in 2012. I was responsible for many of the council’s public-facing services including housing, leisure and museums, environmental health, parks and open spaces, building and contract services.

I have also been a school governor and a trustee of other organisations.

I am married to a retired librarian and we have two daughters – one is a graphic designer and the other is training as a physiotherapist. I also volunteer as an Exeter Cathedral Guide and a Church Recorder. I have an allotment and love reading, walking and gardening. I sing with Exeter Choral Society.

And here’s a tribute to Hazel from Exeter City Council:

City Council pays tribute to former director Hazel Ball
29/06/2015

Staff and Councillors at Exeter City Council have been saddened by the news of the death of one of its former directors, Hazel Ball.

Hazel died on Saturday morning following a short illness.

She retired from the City Council in 2012 as Director of Community and Environment . She spent 35 years working for the local authority, joining in 1976 and working up through the ranks. She became Head of Environmental Health Services in 1996 and then a Strategic Director in 2001.

Council Leader Pete Edwards paid tribute to Hazel. “I am very saddened by this news,” he said. “It is sadly ironic that she took early retirement and then became desperately ill. Hazel was a  long serving member of staff and showed great loyalty to the City Council.  I would like to send my condolences to all of her family.”

Karime Hassan, Chief Executive and Growth Director, said: “Hazel was an outstanding public servant with an impeccable career at the City Council. It hits us all when something like this happens. Hazel will be sadly missed.

Express and Echo

 

Thursday 02 July 2015

Tributes to ‘outstanding civil servant’ Hazel Ball

Tributes have been paid to Hazel Ball, a former Director at Exeter City Council. who died on Saturday after a short illness.

Hazel retired from the City Council in 2012 as Director of Community and Environment . She had spent 35 years working for the local authority, joining in 1976 and working her way up through the ranks. She became Head of Environmental Health Services in 1996 and then a Strategic Director in 2001.

Pete Edwards, Leader of the City Council said: “I am very saddened by this news. It is sadly ironic that she took early retirement and then became desperately.”

Karime Hassan, the City Council’s Chief Executive and Growth Director, said: “Hazel was an outstanding public servant with an impeccable career at the City Council. Hazel will be sadly missed.

Hazel was involved for many years with Exeter’s Citizens’ Advice Bureau.

Steve Barribbal, CAB’s Chief Executive said: “Hazel first joined the board of Exeter CAB in 1980. More recently she took on the role of Vice-Chair of the charity.

“Hazel always brought important insights into emerging strategies and of suggestions where we could benefit from these opportunities.

“She was a vocal advocate for the work of the charity throughout her career and in retirement.

“As a member of our Resources Committee, Hazel brought about important improvements to the services we provide to our clients and was also instrumental in developing the terms and conditions of our staff.

“Her dedication to our charity, and the city was clear for all to see.”

Mr Barriball added: “Until recently I could still expect an e-mail from Hazel about various issues that were affecting our clients or the service. That was who she was.

“We will miss her desperately. Our thoughts are with Jeff, Lydia and Ellie at this extremely difficult time.”