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    The guide discusses key considerations for support providers, as well as good practice and important lessons for each milestone. Alex Osmond, Housing First and Lived Experience Manager
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New guide marks key milestones in Housing First journey

HF Milestone Guide - front cover.jpgToday, we’re really pleased to publish our Housing First Wales Milestone Guide. This has been a long time in the making, and many people were involved in drafting this document.  

We hope that anybody involved in delivering Housing First, in whatever role, might find this document useful. It stands to reason that people new to Housing First might take more from the text, but we think that anybody can learn from this. I know I learned a lot from drafting the guide! 

What is this guide? Essentially, it highlights a set of important milestones during a typical Housing First journey. For each milestone, the guide discusses key considerations for support providers, as well as good practice and important lessons for each milestone. 

The reason for writing this post is, of course, to highlight this newly published document and its aims. I also wanted to take some time to discuss the document’s history, and the extensive work that has gone into it. 

Last year, during a meeting of the Housing First Wales Management Sub Group, a discussion led to the idea that a document covering the ‘key points’ or a ‘timeline’ of a typical Housing First journey would be really useful, particularly for organisations and individuals embarking on the process of delivering HF. Given the wider context of the push for more housing-led approaches in Wales, and the uncertainty and pressures that came with the pandemic, clear guidance about what Housing First clients and tenants tend to experience seemed like a great idea. 

We realised that insight from a wide range of Housing First partners would be valuable for this document, and also thought it would be useful to gather insight from colleagues across the UK. 

With the help of the members of the Housing First Wales Network and its various sub groups, we came up with a set of specific points on a person’s Housing First journey – the ‘milestones’. While we had to arrange these milestones in a linear fashion, Housing First is often a little more flexible in practice! 

As such, readers should be aware that these milestones might:  

  • take place in a different order,  
  • might take place more than once  
  • or even not happen at all!  

The Housing First model is, by definition, flexible, and should not be seen as rigidly linear. 

I’m also really grateful to Claire Frew of Homeless Network Scotland, and Alex Smith of Homeless Link in England. Both colleagues are incredibly passionate about Housing First and developing good practice. They provided detailed feedback about drafts of the Milestone Guide, and Claire also helped facilitate a session of Housing First Network members, to discuss content for the document. 

In conclusion, I cannot emphasise enough how much work a varied group of people put into this document. That’s why we’re hoping it will be so useful – because of the wealth of insight that went into it.  

There are two versions of this document – the full 16-page guidancdocument, and a poster version (available in Welsh and English) that highlights the key milestones, and the main considerations associated with each. 

If anybody has any questions or feedback about these documents, I’d love to hear it. Additionally, we have recently printed copies of these documents and will be sending them to our members and other stakeholders across Wales. If you haven’t received a printed copy, but would like to, please contact housingfirst@cymorthcymru.org.uk. 

HF Milestone Poster CYM.jpg   HF Milestone Poster ENG.jpg

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© Cymorth Cymru 2022
Company Registration No: 5093332
Charity No: 1116774