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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2007): Homelessness - UK

“A place of our own”? Teenage mothers’ views on housing needs and support models

J. Cooke and J. Owen

Children and Society, vol. 21, 2007, p.56-68

Since 2003, government policy has required local authorities to house teenage parents in supported accommodation rather than independent tenancies. This qualitative study looks at young mothers’ routes into housing need and their experiences of access and support, drawing on interview and focus group data collected in 2003. Findings suggest that housing agencies should:

  • Minimise the number of moves young mothers face
  • Maintain effective links with services valued by young parents, such as Sure Start
  • Prioritise forms of support which offer flexibility, particularly floating support
  • Invest in training staff about the specific needs and perspectives of young parents

With them all the way

I. Ferguson, M. Petrie and K. Stalker

Mental Health Today, Feb. 2007, p. 28-31

This research explored the kinds of services and policies that homeless people with drug and alcohol problems find helpful, and with which, therefore, they are more likely to engage. Survey respondents said that they found services helpful which offered:

  • The opportunity to talk through problems
  • A balance between independence and support
  • Staff who were non-judgemental and caring
  • Encouragement to engage with treatment and keep appointments
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