Going it alone: Single, low needs women and hidden homelessness

In early 2006 WISHIN (Women’s Information Support and Housing in the North) was approached by North East Housing Service (NEHS) who were concerned about the number of single women over 35, without dependents who were ringing their service for assistance and whom they were unable to assist. When discussed it was felt that such women would be unlikely to be assisted through the Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (SAAP) because, as low needs women, they did not represent target groups. WISHIN agreed to work on the issue. Before WISHIN could propose solutions however, we needed to understand both how prevalent the problem might be and more about the women who were being ‘turned away’. A Steering Group of consumers reflecting the cohort and the agencies involved was formed to drive the work and a project worker, Dr Andrea Sharam was assigned the task of managing the research task. With the assistance of the Helen MacPherson Smith Trust, the Reichstein Foundation and the E.M. Horton Family the project set out to ‘test demand’, and find out more about these women. This report provides the result of this research.
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