This month I was delighted to meet Director of Crisis Skylight, Ann Landels to discuss the excellent work Crisis does with single homeless people.
Crisis is a national charity which works towards eradicating homelessness by delivering services and campaigning for change.
I was briefed on the work Skylight have developed with singe homeless people since they opened as an outreach centre in Edinburgh 4 years ago. Skylight have worked with over 400 people in the last year and they aim to end homelessness by offering qualifications and also engagement activities, 1-1 coaching around the issues that keep people in homelessness, advice and support to move on work and education, and help with moving into the housing in particular the PRS - they have a pre tenancy course 'Renting Ready' and offer help with deposits and bonds. Skylight are a service that adds value to other services meaning they work in partnership with pretty much all the other organisations in the city. Skylight receive no statutory funding for Skylight services meaning the funding comes from direct giving and also some Lottery funding.
Ann and I discussed how the organisation as a whole works across Scotland and how the Housing Practice team, part funded by Scottish Government and with links to all the Councils in the country and develops and shares good practice on rent deposit guarantee schemes and sharing, especially in PRS.
Finally we talked about the obvious growth in rough sleeping in the city in the last year, the increase numbers using Bethany's Care Shelter. The Council are doing some research to find out the factors behind the increase.
All in all a very informative visit.