Oxfordshire’s Homeless to Receive Support with Funding

Homelessness for hundreds of people and families in Oxfordshire will continue to be prevented by the Oxford based charity Connection Support, which will be funded by Oxfordshire County Council. The funding will provide services for those who need housing support across the county.

The Cowley-based Connection Support housing service assists over 350 Oxfordshire residents at any given time and up to 1,000 annually who are establishing a new home or already housed but at risk of homelessness.

The service provides a lifeline to those threatened with homelessness and experiencing sudden illness, relationship breakdown, or sudden unemployment for example. Assistance is also offered to individuals in the private rental sector who feel their tenancy is under threat because of financial hardship and challenges to pay their rent.

The investment of £600,000 a year has been extended for an additional two years until April 2022.

Many of those supported by the service have faced significant life challenges including domestic violence and abuse, some are struggling with mental health problems and others have learning difficulties.

Peter* received assistance from Connection Support: “I’ve now got my life back. I didn’t have a life before. I was just surviving one day, one hour at a time. I couldn’t look forward to doing anything. Connection Support is worth its weight in gold. Thank you is not enough. If it hadn’t been for Connection Support, I think you know where I would have ended up.”

The service is often the last place that someone at risk of losing their home can turn to and provides an essential safety net for communities across Oxfordshire. The housing support service successfully intervenes in over 97% of cases in order to avoid the trauma of eviction and homelessness for families and single people from a wide range of backgrounds.

Stephen Chandler, Director of Adult Social Care at Oxfordshire County Council says: “Connection Support provides essential support to some of the most vulnerable people in society and helps people to get back on their feet after suffering adverse events in their lives. The impact of the service goes beyond the people Connection Support directly works with. For example, children whose mothers have been victims of domestic abuse also benefit from finding new homes and being in a secure and safe environment”.