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Housing support services deliver £300m gross annual saving to public services in Wales

HSG research front cover.jpgNew research published today by Cymorth Cymru shows that housing support services deliver £300 million gross annual savings to public services in Wales by preventing homelessness, easing pressure on health and social care, and reducing interaction with the criminal justice system.

Led by Cardiff Metropolitan University, with expert economic modelling conducted by Alma Economics, this research evidences a net saving of £1.40 for every £1 invested by the Welsh Government in the Housing Support Grant. This vital funding stream supports over 57,000 people every year, including people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, care experienced young people, older people, people fleeing violence and abuse, people with learning disabilities, and people with mental health and substance misuse problems.

Alongside demonstrating a clear financial benefit, this research differs from previous studies by evidencing the social impact of services on people’s lives. Following over one hundred interviews with people using housing support services in Wales, the results show a sustained positive impact on people’s health, wellbeing, confidence and optimism for the future.

Headline results include:

  • Homelessness and housing support services deliver £300m gross annual savings to public services in Wales.
  • This includes £139m savings to health services, £121m savings to social care, and £48m to the criminal justice system.
  • This equates to a net saving of £1.40 for every £1 invested in the Welsh Government’s Housing Support Grant.
  • 80% of respondents reported a sustained positive impact in relation to feeling in control of their lives
  • 79% of respondents reported a sustained positive impact in relation to their life satisfaction
  • 70% of respondents reported a sustained positive impact regarding their optimism for the future
  • 67% of respondents reported a sustained positive impact on their health

We are extremely grateful to the Oak Foundation for part-funding this project, to Cardiff Metropolitan University and Alma Economics for their expertise, and to all of the participants who ensured that this research was rooted in people’s lived experiences.

Download the report in Welsh or English.

Cymorth Cymru Director Katie Dalton said:

“We’ve always known that housing-related support delivers huge benefits to public services and thousands of people across Wales every year, and we’re really pleased to have robust, independent research from Cardiff Metropolitan University to back this up.

 “Support services are critical to preventing homelessness, improving wellbeing and enabling people to thrive in their communities. With thousands of people brought into emergency accommodation during the pandemic, it has never been more important to invest in the Housing Support Grant.

“This research reinforces our calls on the Welsh Government to increase Housing Support Grant funding in their 2021/22 budget. And as we approach the Welsh elections next year we are urging all political parties to commit to increasing and ring-fencing this vital fund throughout the next Senedd term.”

 

Marc Fury, lead researcher, Cardiff Metropolitan University, said:

“It is more important than ever to demonstrate the value of the Housing Support Grant (HSG) in Wales.

“This research, developed by Cardiff Met University in partnership with Cymorth Cymru, not only provides an analysis of the financial impact of HSG and the potential savings on health, social care and criminal justice, it also demonstrates the social impact on people’s lives and their life experiences.

“It has been a privilege to be a part of this research and we are looking forward to launching the report at the Cymorth Cymru webinar this Thursday.”

 

HSG research toolkit - English.jpg

HSG research toolkit - Cymraeg.jpg

A toolkit for Cymorth members

As part of our research project we have also produced a toolkit, which aims to help our members to apply the research to their own services, secure support for their vital work and make the case for sustained and increased investment in housing support services.

This is available on request to Cymorth members only.

Please email policy@cymorthcymru.org.uk if you would like a copy.

 

 

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© Cymorth Cymru 2020
Company Registration No: 5093332
Charity No: 1116774