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South Holland authority finds new home for three rough sleepers

Three men who were once sleeping rough in South Holland have each been found a new home and job in the space of six weeks.

Each of the men found themselves homeless after their relationships broke down, but a new and different partnership has helped turn their lives around.

Change4 Lincs, a team set up to support rough sleepers in South Holland and three other areas of Lincolnshire, worked to find the men a new, permanent place to live and new employment after they were moved into temporary accommodation at the start of November.

Three former rough sleepers in South Holland have been rehomed.
Three former rough sleepers in South Holland have been rehomed.

Coun Christine Lawton, South Holland District Council's portfolio holder for private sector and sheltered housing, said: "The journey of these three residents has really been inspiring to hear and is testament to the fantastic work and desire to go above and beyond from our staff at the council and through the Change4Lincs partnership.

"Especially at this time of year it is so important to remember that rough sleeping really can happen to anyone and that a little bit of help and support can go a long way.

"As well as crucial support with their benefits and accommodation, the little gestures like providing toiletries and bedding are so important in helping someone to settle in and make their new house feel like a home.

The Change4Lincs team set up a programme of support and outreach to work with the men, helping them through the necessary forms and steps to get Universal Credit entitlement, correct identification and start to search for employment and a permanent home.

This was eventually found at a suitable multiple occupancy property in Spalding and the men were able to move in together as the council worked with the landlord to agree discretionary housing payments to support them.

The men were also given fresh bedding and essential toiletries, while Spalding's Agapecare Foodbank provided them with regular food parcels.

Two of the men are due to start new jobs this week, with the other man having registered for work with an employment agency.

Coun Lawton said: "I would like to thank everyone involved from the Council and Change4Lincs for their work on this case.

"Without partnership working like this, it would not be possible to do anything like this as quickly, if at all, and the team deserve huge credit for the work they do."

Anyone who is homeless, or threatened with homelessness, should call the council's housing options team as soon as possible on 0808 100 0210.

Alternatively, if you need help or know of someone sleeping rough in South Holland, call the P3 (People, Potential, Possibilities) Street Outreach Team on 0808 281 028.

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