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World Habitat welcomes the launch of the new Housing First Academy in Scotland and believes it will play a crucial role in providing training and ensuring that Housing First services continue to provide great outcomes for homeless people.

Launched by Turning Point Scotland, the Housing First Academy is an online community for those who are committed to Housing First as the default model for people experiencing complex homelessness challenges. It is a place for both professionals and volunteers to connect and share ambition and good practice.

This is the latest step for Scotland, where Housing First has been implemented for the last decade – growing from a single pilot in European End Street Homelessness Campaign city Glasgow, to what is now a nationally government-backed programme.

The Academy is centred around three hubs, to support managers, commissioners and other stakeholders to deliver Housing First.

  • The Communities of Practice Hub – brings Housing First professionals together to share their experiences and challenges, to provide the best services and support.
  • The Training Hub – delivers multiple levels of training to support the learning and development of practitioners, managers, and partners.
  • The Housing First Europe Hub – Turning Point Scotland is a co-founder of this European network of organisations, foundations, governments and experts working together to promote the scaling up of Housing First as an effective, systemic response to homelessness across Europe.

Sandra Green, Training and Development Officer, and Susan Jack, Housing First Development Officer from Turning Point Scotland, said:

“It is part of the Academy’s vision that those working in Housing First in Scotland become active citizens in the Housing First community in Europe and beyond.  There is amazing work being done and it makes sense to share and learn from each other.

“The work of the Academy comes at a crucial point as Housing First is rolled out across Scotland; its citizens have an active role to play in developing and promoting best practice.

“We hope that the work of the Academy – by connecting people and developing good practice – will contribute to ending homelessness in Scotland.”

Patrick Duce, Programme Lead for Homelessness at World Habitat, said:

“We are delighted to see Turning Point Scotland launch the Housing First Academy and look forward to seeing how they share their good practice and years of expertise with other practitioners both in Scotland and beyond.

“As associate members of the Housing First Europe Hub, we connect our European End Street Homelessness Campaign cities to projects and programmes so they can learn about good practice and what works from all across Europe. World Habitat have long advocated for Housing First as a solution to street homelessness. When delivered correctly in accordance with the key principles, Housing First is proven to be an effective intervention for those with multiple and complex needs and a history of chronic homelessness. The Academy will play a crucial role in providing training for frontline staff and ensure that Housing First services continue to offer the best outcomes for those who need it most.”

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