Croydon commissions’ mental health specialist supported housing services for 240 people. Some provide accommodation where the support is provided on site. The accommodation is either two people shared self-contained shared flats in small clusters and shared houses with shared facilities. The majority of services are intended for short-term stays (up to two years) people move on to their own flat or other support services.
Fewer services are long-term; like the Shared Lives service (formerly known as the supported lodgings service). Where people move into the homes of householders (caring landlords/landladies) where they will have their own room and support from the carer and a team of professionals.
Finally, there are some floating support schemes which provide support to people living in their own homes. These can either be for a short period of time (3 to 6 months) to help someone settle into a new home, or can be for longer periods or indefinitely.
What kind of support is provided?
All schemes have support workers who help people draw up a support plan with goals and aspirations which they use collaboratively to help people keep their homes which is reviewed regularly. To enable a person to have a more fulfilling and active life, stay well, eat healthy meals to manage their money, pay their rent etc. Support workers do not provide health or care services but they do signpost people to other services who can.
The support staff give general advice, information and emotional support to help people to:
* Set up home or manage a home or tenancy
*Develop domestic and life skills
*Develop social skills
*Manage their money and make benefit claims
*Access other services such as health services, employment and training services, and local community organisations: this might involve telling people about the services on offer; referring them onto relevant services or making appointments; and advocating on their behalf
*Establish social contacts and activities
*Find other accommodation.
The numbers of hours of support vary from one scheme to another. It depends upon the aims of each service and the needs of individual.
The support services are provided by a variety of organisations including the, housing associations (registered social landlords), charitable organisations and the council or SLaM.
Do I have to pay for support?
People using short term support services that are intended to last for less than two years do not have to pay anything towards the sHowever, people in long term services (more than two years) may have to pay towards the costs. If you are on housing benefit, you do not have to pay anything. Even if you are not on housing benefit, you may be able to get help - you can apply for an assessment to find out if some or all of the cost of the support charge can be paid for by the Council.
The way in which the Council works out how much people should pay is set out in the Council’s charging policy which can be found on the Croydon Council website www.croydon.gov.uk .
How do I know that support services are good quality?
The support services funded by the Council Supporting People funding (see above) are all monitored by the Council’s Supporting People Team.
Each year the Supporting People Team will check your support service to make sure that your support provider is doing what it has agreed to. If there are concerns about the quality of schemes the Supporting People team will carry out further detailed checks always involving the people using the service to make sure they have the chance to say if anything is unsatisfactory.
How do I get support or move into a service?
A care coordinator or social worker would have to refer you to the Support Needs and Assessment and Placement ervice. The Council pays for housing support services through a programme called Supporting People.
(SNAP) team by way of a referral form which you would complete with them or someone who knows you best. The SNAP team may arrange for you to either meet with them or meet directly with a support worker from a specific service. You may have an interview and then if there is a vacancy they would show you the accommodation.
If you are homeless, apply to Croydon Housing Advice Service (part of Croydon Council) - if you are vulnerable because of your mental health problem and homeless through no fault of your own, the Council may have a duty to find you accommodation. It will also refer you to SNAP team for an assessment of your support needs if appropriate.
If you have somewhere to live but you are having problems managing or you think a support service may help, either talk to your care manager if you have one. You may also refer yourself to the Generic floating support service, details of how to do this from the Council’s SNAP team.
Unfortunately, Croydon doesn’t have as many services as are needed so you may have to wait or you may not get your preferred service (for example, you may only be offered a place in a hostel with shared facilities rather than a self-contained flat).
Department for adult services health and housing,Adult care commissioning, Bernard Weatherill House, 8 Mint Walk, Croydon, Surrey, CR0 1EA
London Borough of Croydon
London Borough of Croydon Residents
Supporting People team leader contracts & reviews