Working together to support the homeless
A new scheme is being introduced this week which aims to coordinate groups across Birmingham that help the homeless with the aim of providing more effective and targeted support.
Launching on Thursday 8 October the Homeless Outreach Accreditation Scheme from Birmingham City Council will bring together about 25 voluntary organisations including Midland Heart, with a shared commitment to helping homeless people.
Raj Shroff, Deputy Director for Care and Support at Midland Heart, said: “This is an excellent initiative which we fully support. Our outreach team are trained to engage with people that are sleeping rough on the streets of Birmingham each and every day.
“We know that there are also a number of other organisations who are committed to support homeless people and the accreditation will mean that together we can have an even greater impact through a much more coordinated approach.”
Organisations and groups will pledge to sign up to the scheme from Thursday putting forward members of their groups to take part in a training programme before becoming fully accredited outreach workers.
Birmingham City Council’s cabinet member for Neighbourhood Management and Homes, Cllr John Cotton, who leads on the city’s homelessness strategy said: “There are lots of voluntary groups across the city involved in supporting homeless people. These groups do a brilliant job of providing basics like food and blankets but there is so much more we could do if we all worked together.
An event is being held to mark the launch where people will hear contributions from Cllr John Cotton, Birmingham’s Victims Champion Cllr Sharon Thompson, the chair of Birmingham Street Homeless Multi-agency Partnership John Hardy and Inspector Gareth Morris from West Midlands Police. There will also be a performance of ‘There’s No Place like Home’ by pupils at Rookery Primary School.