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Liverpool City Region has an alternative approach to Homelessness.

What we do

The Liverpool City Region is one of just three areas in the country piloting Housing First which uses a different approach to end repeat and chronic homelessness.

In traditional homeless services, people are expected to demonstrate they are ‘housing ready’ before they can access housing. In Housing First, providing a home is the starting point rather than an end goal.

It then provides individual, targeted support to deal with mental and physical health issues  such as addiction and the effects of trauma and abuse.

The programme offers intensive one-to-one unconditional support based on the seven Housing First principles explained below.

Why is Housing First different?

Meet our support workers Sean and Daniel as they describe how working within Housing First is different from other ways of working and how they offer unconditional support to their clients.

Watch the video

Housing First Stories

Housing First was developed in New York by Dr Sam Tsemberis in 1992. In the Liverpool City Region we are currently supporting 220 people with nearly 90% sustaining their tenancy.

Read our case studies


Funded by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, Housing First will continue for the next three years with £4.2m funding until 2024 and a further £2.6 million earmarked from the Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI) taking the programme through to 2025.

The Liverpool City Region Combined Authority will also receive a further £2m from the RSI for other measures to tackle homelessness. £1.2m will help prevent homelessness through early intervention, and nearly three quarters of a million pounds will fund the assertive outreach programme delivered by homeless charity Whitechapel targeting rough sleepers in the city region.

Housing First principles:

Housing First is built on seven principles focused on enabling the service user. How closely the programme adheres to the principles is referred to as fidelity. In the Liverpool City Region we follow a high fidelity model.

Research shows the effectiveness of the programme is linked to how closely it adheres to the principles which are:

Principle Description
1: Everyone has a right to a home. Housing First is fundamentally rights-based. Everyone has the right to a home that provides them with security.
2: Flexible support is provided for as long as is needed Relationships are a key tool for change. Removing vital support before the person is ready, can lead to relapse.
3: Housing and support are separated We all have power to make decisions about our lives that does not impact our housing. Housing First residents have the same right.
4: Individuals have choice and control Years of homelessness can be deeply disempowering. Housing First works to reverse the impact of trauma, putting the individual at the centre of decision-making.
5: An assertive engagement approach is used Trauma impacts an individual’s ability to build trusting relationships and access help. Housing First finds non-threatening ways of proactively engaging with people.
6: The service is based on people’s strengths, goals and aspirations Focussing on the deficits of a person reinforces low self-worth. By helping them to identify their strengths, we can build individuals’ resilience, hope and self-esteem.
7: A harm reduction approach is used Moving into a home will not make people change overnight. Housing First takes a holistic approach to reducing harm and improving well-being.
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