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Housing-related support

Housing-related support services help vulnerable people live independently and prevent homelessness. People who may use housing related support include:

  • Homeless people
  • Older people
  • Ex-offenders
  • People who misuse drugs and alcohol
  • People with HIV or physical, sensory or learning difficulties
  • Young people at risk or leaving care
  • Teenage parents
  • People experiencing or at rosk of domestic abuse

Housing-related support

Housing-related support aims to help vulnerable people find a home, or stay at home, offering support in:

  • managing debts, budgeting and applying for benefits
  • gaining access to other services and organisations that can provide support and help
  • learning life and social skills
  • finding out about work or college
  • keeping an eye on personal wellbeing
  • alarm systems to enable people to call for help in an emergency
  • carrying out necessary repairs, maintenance work or adapting their property
  • dealing with other professionals, family and neighbours and advocating on behalf of people.

Housing-related support aims to prevent the problems that can cause vulnerable people to become homeless, build up debts or rent arrears, need hospital treatment or move into care, and to help them to have a better quality of life; independent in their community.

Housing-related support does not include:

  • personal care, like washing and dressing
  • healthcare or medication
  • preparing meals, shopping or cooking on a regular basis
  • cleaning
  • specialist counselling or treatment
  • childcare
  • outings or holidays
  • gardening

Do I pay for housing-related support?

People who receive housing benefit do not have to pay for the service. Long-term service users (those using services for more than two years) who do not receive housing benefit can be assessed by the Fairer Charging Team for full or partial relief from the charge, depending on their circumstances. Most short-term service users (provided for less than two years) are automatically exempt from charges. Where this is not the case, a fairer charging assessment will also apply.

Every service is reviewed on an annual basis. Service users and other stakeholders are involved in the monitoring and review process as much as possible. Providers send in information to ensure that the service is needed, used, of high quality and offers good value for money.

Complaints

If you are worried about housing-related support, we would recommend that you talk to the provider first if you can and ask to see a copy of their complaints procedure. If you are still not satisfied then you can fill out our complaints form.

Where necessary, we are able to investigate complaints and work with users, providers and stakeholders to make improvements.

The team does not have the power to investigate safeguarding concerns itself, though we do record and ensure that they are transferred to safeguarding teams for investigation. If you are worried that a vulnerable adult is being subjected to abuse you should follow the Kent and Medway Adult Protection Protocols immediately.

Monitoring service quality

Every housing-related support service has a contract with Medway Council to provide a housing-related service. To make sure that services comply with that contract, the team’s Performance and Compliance Officers visit and review the quality of the service. This visit includes talking to people who currently use the service to find out what it’s really like.

Support providers are encouraged and assisted to find ways to improve the quality of their service for people who use them. Part of that visit is to make sure that all housing-related support services have complaints, safeguarding and Adult Protection procedures that work if things go wrong.