The success of projects helping rough sleepers means only one known person sleeps on the streets of Bury, councilors have heard.
An increase in support for the homeless through two programs, A Bed for Every Night (ABEN) and the Stepping Stones emergency shelter, means the current number of registered rough sleepers in the Bury district is around 40, all but one of which are currently in support Accommodation Find shelter accommodation.
A housing update from the Bury Council Audit Committee said: “Due to the success of the new deployment and funding, we currently have only one known rough sleeper on the streets with whom the outreach has been working closely to engage and take appropriate action Accommodation.
“The funds were invested in an independent partner, Stepping Stones, to provide 15 beds and support with emergency care.
“The Greater Manchester Combined Authority funding for A Bed for Every Night also provides an additional 25 supported bed places for a total of 40 individual residential units with support.
“The team has been very successful in moving rough sleepers to safer, longer-term accommodation, despite the increase in the number of cases.
“Longer term strategic responses are also being developed through the Bury Homeless Partnership, including the establishment of an ethical rental agency through Greater Manchester Let Us
with two pieces of land specifically intended for our rough sleepers, others are in the pipeline for the future. ”
The Bury Council said it has been helping 55 former rough sleepers into sedentary homes since the coronavirus pandemic broke out.
Bury Homeless Partnership is working to find and support rough sleepers in hopes of getting them off the streets for good.
During the pandemic, the council saw a significant increase in the number of rough sleepers within the district.
Through their work, people provided a safe place to sleep with support and food, and received help in building a better life away from the streets.
Cabinet Councilor Coun Clare Cummins said, “We still have a small number of rough sleepers with whom we continue to work and seek out, but because of the success of our multi-agency approach, most are now safe in our sheltered shelter.”
Rough sleeping is the most visible form of homelessness, typically associated with sleeping outdoors, but it also refers to sleeping in a non-residential location, such as an empty building or a car.
Coun Cummins added, “Successful funding offers give us the resources and additional capacity we need to support and accommodate all of the rough sleepers in the district.
“This is especially important as we enter the season of colder, potentially life threatening weather.
“Nobody should have restless sleep in Bury – if you see anyone you are concerned about, please let us know so that we can help vulnerable people stay safe and keep our streets out.”