Charity stops offering beds for rough sleepers in Nottingham – but provision will double at site

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A charity which provided beds for homeless adults in Nottingham city has explained why it has stopped. YMCA, which delivers a range of housing services, provided 10 beds at Wellesley House on Shakespeare Street in the city centre.

But the charity decided to end that, withdrawing from delivering this and ending their lease on the building, according to a Nottingham City Council delegated decision. However, a different company will carry on the provision, providing 20 beds and supported accommodation for rough sleepers, double the number available in 2021/22.

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Gurmeet Virdi, executive director for supported housing at YMCA Robin Hood Group, said: “With all of our decisions needing to reflect what is the best course of action for our residents and staff, the YMCA’s withdrawal from Wellesley House forms part of the charity’s wider strategic growth plan for supporting a record number of young people across the region. We therefore wish the new building tenants the very best of luck with their new venture and hope they enjoy every happiness in a venue that has served us well.”

After YMCA pulled out of the provision, Nottingham City Council sold Wellesley House to Bloom Social Housing Community Interest Company, which will carry on the services for a fixed term of 12 months after drawing up a model to do so. Once approved, the local authority will accepted a grant of £271,816 from Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities Rough Sleeping Initiative to fund it.

The entrance to YMCA gym on Wellesley House, Shakespeare Street
The entrance to YMCA gym on Wellesley House, Shakespeare Street

The delegated decision states: “In March, 11 individuals were found bedded down and a further 63 rough sleepers in supported accommodation or emergency provision. Retaining and expanding access to the Wellesley House provision (by an increase of 10 bed spaces compared to 2021/22 delivery) is necessary to ensure that rough sleepers are accommodated, supported and resettled.”

Other options for the site were considered, but were rejected as no appropriate alternative providers or properties for the provision could be found.

Councillor Linda Woodings, Labour councillor for Basford ward and portfolio holder for housing, said: “The services provided from Wellesley House provide vital support for people who are sleeping rough – giving them temporary accommodation and connecting them to wider support before resettling them. We’re pleased to be able to use this funding from government to keep those services running for another year with a new provider.”

Written by: thehitnetwork

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