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£900,000 for Homeless to Work Programme

April 02 2010
Scheme will actively seek out people and offer them services, says Mayor of London‘s office

The Mayor of London's office is to spend £900,000 on a new programme aimed at getting rough sleepers back to work.

The scheme is part of a wider Department of Work and Pension's (DWP) 'Back to Work' scheme, the overall budget of which is £15m.

It is not yet clear how the Homeless to Work scheme will function in London, as it is being contracted out to an outside organisation. According to the Mayor's office, the organisation taking on the project will be selected in September.

Leona Janson-Smith, of the Mayor's housing department, suggests the scheme will differ from others in that it will actively seek out people and offer them services. She said: "A lot of the other work is about people coming forward to services. We want to target them specifically. It's more proactive - we are trying to reach them. Back to Work [the DWP scheme] is much bigger: people will be assessed, then directed towards services."

However, the Mayor's office will have no control over how the Homeless to Work scheme is run once it begins, as the DWP will make the decision regarding where the contract will go.