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Supporting People

The Supporting People programme provides housing related support to vulnerable people to enable them to live more independently.


Supporting People began on 1 April 2003, bringing together seven housing related funding streams from across Central Government. It is a grant programme administered through 152 top-tier authorities in partnership with Housing, Health, Social Services and Probation, and is delivered largely by the voluntary and community sector, and housing associations.

Supporting People services aim to prevent individuals experiencing crises and requiring more costly service intervention; and to enable vulnerable people to live independently through the provision of housing-related support services.

Authorities' performance in delivering housing-related support is measured through Comprehensive Area Assessments and through the two National Performance Indicators 141 and 142.

Supporting People funding

From April 2010, Supporting People was allocated to local authorities as a non-ringfenced grant paid as part of Area Based Grant. A transitional package of support is in place to support local authorities through this change, including a local financial benefits model which enables authorities to understand the impact of investment in housing related support.

The programme helps around one million people at any one time, including approximately:

  • 815,000 older people with support needs
  • 39,000 single homeless people
  • 36,000 people with mental health problems
  • 10,000 women at risk of domestic violence

Supporting People Outcomes data is collected to help understand the impact of services. For example, between April 2008 and March 2009, clients leaving short-term services (ie less than two years in duration) achieved the following outcomes:

  • 59,556 people maintained their accommodation and avoided eviction
  • 43,100 people were able to better manage their physical health
  • 30,330 people accessed their desired training and education needs
  • 7,896 people gained paid employment

Data about clients who enter Supporting People services and the outcomes that they achieve is at: https://www.spclientrecord.org.uk/login.cfm (external link).

Select Committee

In March 2009 the Communities and Local Government Select Committee announced an inquiry into the Supporting People programme.  The Committee looked at the delivery of the Supporting People programme and the implications of removing the ring fence.  

Their report - Communities and Local Government Committee - Thirteenth Report
The Supporting People Programme
(external link) - welcomed the devolution of decision making on local matters to local authorities. The Government's response was published in January 2010.

Change to Supporting People website

We announced the archiving of the SPK website on 22 January 2010. Here is a link to the letter (external link) sent out to authorities. Links to Supporting People job vacancies and tenders can be sent to us for publication in this section. If you wish to promote a Supporting People job vacancy or tender that is advertised on your website please send the link to Mike.Aimey@Communities.gsi.gov.uk for consideration.

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