Jackie Bliss, HARP Chief Executive
In 2013, HARP pledged to End Rough Sleeping, and in our latest impact report we celebrate doing just that for hundreds of local people who have faced homelessness over the last five years.
In that time we have increased our overall accommodation from 77 rooms in 2012, to 174 in 2018, and as the number of rooms we provide has risen, the number of rough sleepers known to us at the end of each year has steadily dropped too. Furthermore, 1,133 people that were homeless between 2014 and 2018 have been housed, including 146 entrenched, long-term rough sleepers.
Many people who endure life on the streets also suffer with poor health and have a much higher chance of needing medical intervention, which is why we embedded health and wellbeing into our overall strategy. Over 3,800 medical interventions have been made since 2014, helping to drastically improve the health and wellbeing of the people we support.
Overall, we helped 5,710 people between 2013 and 2018, which equates to an estimated £60m saving to the public purse.
David, who was homeless whilst suffering with a serious lung condition, found sanctuary at HARP who he said gave him life-saving support.
David said, “if I didn’t come to HARP, I’d probably be dead now. If I had been on the streets long term, I wouldn’t have survived many cold nights with my illness”.
As this five-year strategy comes to an end, we are now looking ahead under the leadership of Chief Executive, Jackie Bliss, who said “the targets which HARP set itself five years ago were stretching, and those we are setting now for the coming five years are equally ambitious. They have to be, because the need for our services is as great as it has ever been, perhaps greater.”
She continued, “it’s not going to be easy, but with the work that has gone before we have a fantastic opportunity to reach yet more people and help turn more lives around, innovating as HARP has always done in order to find solutions to our service users’ problems.”
You can read the full impact report here.