16 Sep 2016

Boost for project that gets the homeless housed quick

7:54 am on 16 September 2016

A research project aimed at solving homelessness has been given $2.5 million in government funding.

A car prepared to be slept in this evening at the #parkupforhomes event in Mangere. 16 June 2016.

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

The five-year study, led by Otago University, will monitor the progress of 250 people housed by the People's Project in Hamilton.

The project is modelled on Housing First, an international network that gets people into houses quickly and then gives support to address the reasons for their homelessness.

Research leader Nevil Pierse said this had led to people being housed within seven days, while New Zealand's housing waiting list is seven months.

He said the study will monitor things such as health records to see if housing people quickly made a difference.

"So I'll be monitoring the 250 odd that they have already housed. So I'll be about to judge those outcomes two years down the line and five years down the line and we'll be just able to see how much of a difference actually housing them made."

Mr Pierse said with a homeless person costing an estimated $65,000 a year, housing them sooner could save money.

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