Housing First in Wales now has its own Policy and Practice Coordinator – funded by the Welsh Government.
Alex Osmond is to take up the position pitched as supporting the implementation of Housing First across Wales.
He will be based at Cymorth Cymru, the umbrella organisation for homelessness, housing and support services in Wales, which runs the Housing First Wales Network.
Drawing on a background of project management and research experience, Osmond joins the Cymorth team from The Wallich where he produced a number of reports evidencing the impact of charity’s services.
“We’re absolutely delighted to have appointed Alex, who has an excellent understanding of the Housing First model and how it could transform the lives of people who have previously been failed by the system,” said Cymorth Cymru Director Katie Dalton.
In recent years the Welsh Government has thrown its support behind this model, making ‘trailblazer’ funding available to establish and deliver Housing First schemes across several areas of Wales.
The model has strong international evidence behind it and is credited with drastically reducing rough sleeping.
Osmond said: “It has been clear for some time that Housing First can be transformative for vulnerable people with incredibly complex lives. It’s a privilege to be involved in implementing it across Wales, and I’m excited to get moving.”
Cymorth Cymru established the Housing First Wales Network in 2017.
The Coordinator position will help ensure schemes comply with the nationally agreed principles and have the greatest possible impact.
A critical part of this will include the development of a quality mark to ensure that organisations adhere to these principles and deliver schemes which are as effective as possible.
Several schemes in Wales are already underway, with councils, housing, support providers and health working together to provide housing solutions and support.