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A ‘life-changing’ hostel for homeless people in the City of London will continue to operate until the spring – with the help of almost £1 million in Government cash. Rough sleeping rates have fallen dramatically since the City of London Corporation converted a youth hostel in...

A ‘life-changing’ hostel for homeless people in the City of London will continue to operate until the spring – with the help of almost £1 million in Government cash.

Rough sleeping rates have fallen dramatically since the City of London Corporation converted a youth hostel in the Square Mile to provide beds for homeless people in May, at the height of the pandemic.

The City Corporation has announced the 45-bed hostel will now continue to operate until the end of March next year, supported by a £941,600 allocation from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

The cash is part of a £91.5m fund for councils in England to ensure interim accommodation and support offered for homeless people during the pandemic can continue.

Randall Anderson, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Community and Children’s Services Committee, said: “Supporting the City’s most vulnerable is our number one priority.

“As the winter months approach, this extra funding from the government gives us  time to continue helping the residents achieve stability in their lives so that they can move to more permanent housing.”

Marianne Fredericks, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Sub Committee, said: “Since it opened, the hostel has provided life-changing support to homeless people in the City, offering a safe place to stay for some of our most vulnerable residents.

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“We’re fully committed to doing everything we can to help rough sleepers into safe accommodation and supporting them with the complex issues which all too often play a part in keeping them on the streets.

“We’re delighted with the extra Government funding we’ve received, which will play a big part in helping us to continue running a service that is playing a vital role in keeping people safe and helping them to transform their lives.”

The City Corporation initially opened its homeless hostel in the YHA youth hostel in Carter Lane on a three-month lease, later extended to September.

Since it opened, the number of rough sleepers typically found in the Square Mile on any given day has fallen from between 40 and 50 to around 15.

Meanwhile, the City Corporation has announced a new provider for its Rough Sleeping Outreach Service, which helps people living on the streets find accommodation and supports them with any issues they face.

From November, the service will be offered by the charity Thames Reach and will offer an increased focus on long-term rough sleepers with complex needs.

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