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Scottish Charity Register No. SC043760

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Your own budget

May 24 2009
City rough sleepers to be helped off the streets via a unique "individual budget" scheme Rough sleepers in the City of London are to be helped off the streets via a unique "individual budget" scheme launched this month. Around £100,000 has been allocated to the year-long initiative launched by the City of London Corporation and Broadway on 1st April. At least 25 rough sleepers will be given an assessment-based fund to help them into accommodation. Susanna Howard, spokeswoman for the Corporation, explained: "The scheme will take into account the needs of each and every rough sleeper engaged with the project. Each rough sleeper will be assigned an intermediary to negotiate their personalised budget with the partnership of Broadway and the City of London Corporation." London has been chosen as a priority area for the pilot scheme because of its high level of long-term homelessness. A recent Homeless Link report on street homelessness revealed that half of England's rough sleepers - around 3,000 people over the course of a year - are found in London. Even though there has been a decline in the number of rough sleepers in the capital in the past decade, London is the only region in the country that has failed to meet the government's 1998 target to reduce rough sleeping by two-thirds, added the report. Ms Howard said: "The City of London, working with Broadway, is committed to tackling rough sleeping in the City, and it is hoped that this personalised approach will enable us to engage more closely with rough sleepers to help them regain control of their lives, get them off the streets and into accommodation." If the pilot scheme proves successful, the City of London Corporation will seek funding from mainstream budgets to extend it. "This is a way homeless people can get some control back", said Ms Howard.