Our accommodation in Rushden supports rough sleepers with accommodation and move on support.
What We Do
Rushden Homeless Accommodation provide a roof and support for those who are rough sleeping or at risk of rough sleeping, in North Northamptonshire.
The accommodation is opened 24/7, 365 days a year. It is a short-medium term accommodation. Staff and volunteers work with residents to move address barriers to housing and move them into permanent accommodation. We expect clients whilst they are with us to engage with this support, as well as the house code of conduct which includes taking responsibility for their environment. Once individuals have a bed with us, that bed is theirs until they move on or leave. They do not have to turn up each night not knowing whether they have a bed and a roof, but have a sense of continuity and security which we hope helps them move on successfully.
Whilst With Us
Different individuals require different levels of support. Below is a list of some of the things that our staff and volunteers support with:
- Identify individuals barriers to maintaining housing
- Guiding them through the homelessness application and pathway with council housing teams
- Life skills to help sustain living independently, such as cooking, budgeting
- Support them accessing addiction services
- Access training and work opportunities
- Address health issues, both mental and physical
- Find permanent accommodation that is sustainable and affordable
After Move On
We work with the local authority and other accommodation providers such as supported accommodation orprivate landlords to find places for individuals to move on.
Once they leave us, we offer to continue our support to ensure that they maintain the accommodation. This might jsut be helping to set up direct debits, or could be attending appointments with them and arranging food parcels.
Access To Our Service
We take self-referrals which can be done by ringing the project during office hours or agencies can download our referral form below. Instructions for referrals are on the form.
Unfortunately due to the risk assessments and the fact that this is people’s home, albeit a temporary one, we do not take people straight from the street. We work closely with the outreach and housing teams within the council and other work within the charity helps those whilst they are rough sleeping.
Most of our eligibility criteria is based our risk assessment, which is based on the indiviudal and situational (i.e. based on other residents, staffing levels, support needs and our ability to meet these, resources available).
The only other eligibility criteria we apply as standard is:
- Whether the individual has a connection to North Northants. Normally, this is whether they have lived locally for two out of the last three years, whether they work in NN and have done for over 6 months, or whether they have close family (i.e. parents, sibiling or children) who have lived here for 5 years continuously. More information can be found on the NN Council’s keyways allocation policy.
- If the indiviudal has an unspent conviction for arson
- If the indiviudal has an unspent conviction for a sexual offence
- If the indiviudal is deemed to be at risk in the local area which could put others, including residents and staff, at risk
All potential residents will have an assessment, either face to face or over the phone, where will ask questions about their situation, their previous housing and any support issues they have.
We do ask that individuals are as honest as possible; we do not form judgements around situations however, understanding the challenges someone is facing will help us better support them. For example, this could be that we put them in a different bedroom if they have anxiety, or could be that we ensure there are facililties for clean needle exchanges for drug users.
We will make a risk assessment based on the indiviudal and the other residents in the house to ensure that their stay with us is as positive as possible.
Whilst residing with us, we as an organisation are in receipt of their housing benefit which covers roughly 70% of our costs.
We also ask that residents pay a nominal service charge each week to help cover the other costs, and to also build positive habits around paying bills and costs, and budgeting.
We will not ask residents to pay this to the detriment of the client, for example if they have no money due to a benefit delay. We may, depending on the circumstances, ask for evidence for this.
Is there a minimum or maximum length of stay?
We are not prescriptive about a minimum or maximium time for someone to reside with us however generally we would expect someone to be with us for at least 2-3 months, and no more than 12-18 months. Each case is different and depends on what an indiviudal needs, and also depends on how long it takes to find more permanent acccomodation
I am an agency - can I refer a client to you?
Yes we accept referrals from agencies and indiviudals directly.
We ask that you always ask permission from the indiviual before referring, and explain what we do so that they are aware.
We also ask that you include as much information as possible on your referral to avoid delays or misunderstandings.
Our referral form can be found above.
Is it men only?
We are open to all genders as we have indiviudal rooms rather than shared.
Our bathroom, kitchen and lounge facilities are shared with up to two people.
We will not refuse accommodation ue to how someone identifies or any other charateristic.
Unfortunately our accommodation is not suitable for those who are disabled who use a wheelchair or who struggle with stairs. For someone with a disability you may qualify for priority need with the council so we would recommend contacting them.
Is there a charge for residents?
We ask residents to contribute a nomial service charge each week, whilst they are with us. This is to cover costs and to get into the habit of paying rent/bills. Our aim is to enable people to gain and maintain permanent accommodation and paying bills is a key part of this.
This is currently £10 a week.
We would never refuse entry to someone who could not pay, nor would it be detrimental to someone’s stay if they were unable to pay – we would work with them to establish why and resolve this.
Do you operate a waiting list?
Yes we operate a waiting list and do this on a first come first served basis. We do not make judgements as to who is in higher need than someone else.
Once a referral or initial contact is made, you may be asked some basic questions and you will be placed on the waiting list. When a space comes up, or is about to, we will contact you to arrange an assessment.
How long will I have to wait before I can come in?
Unfortunately our beds are full nearly all of the time and we have several people our waiting list year round. As things constantly change, it could be a couple of weeks or it could be months.
In the meantime we would encourage you to contact the local council to open a homeless application, and would also encourage you to apply to supported accommodation in the areas if that is suitable. You can visit our day centre for help with this if needed.
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Our Impact and Successes
“I arrived in a bit of a mess but now I have gota place to live and am happier.”
72% of those who lived with us in 2020 were helped to find longer term accommodation
15% of our clients in 2020 received counselling
‘D’ shared he “felt Broken [with] no future” and our homeless accommodation helped him “realise I did have a future“