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No Night Out: Preventing street homelessness 

“For many, when they face their first night on the streets, they do not have any existing mental health or substance misuse issues. However, after the experience rough sleeping – it is highly likely that people will leave with at least one of these issues.” – Mick Clarke, Chief Executive at The Passage.

In most scenarios, prevention is better than cure – and it is no different when it comes to homelessness.

While homelessness can take many hidden forms, rough sleeping, although the tip of the iceberg is the most recognised here in the UK and across the world.

Whilst all forms of homelessness can have a lasting impact on individuals and families – with children who endure homelessness more likely to experience it in later life – rough sleeping can be harmful and dangerous, with many people being subjected to unacceptable treatment from others and offers of unsafe shelter or employment. The risk of exploitation for people who are experiencing rough sleeping also increases, with the links between modern slavery and homelessness becoming more apparent.

Therefore, preventing someone from spending their first night on the streets can be vital to protecting their health, safety and well-being in the long term. A core part of The Passage’s mission is to ‘prevent homelessness by intervening quickly, before reaching crisis point’. Towards the end of the pandemic, we developed evidence of the positive impact that preventative and urgent action can have through the pilot of our No Night Out initiative.

We provide access to immediate emergency accommodation which enables us to prevent people from spending their first night on the streets. Our expert teams work quickly to find suitable and sustainable long-term housing solutions – tailored to the unique needs of each person.

No Night Out has proven to be highly successful since launching in 2022. 196 people were prevented, or helped, from spending a night on the streets and assisted to private rented sector accommodation, reconnection or other longer-term accommodation. Out of that number, 183 are sustaining their accommodation and 13 required further intervention to stay in accommodation, and only 5 of those remain on the street.

After the successful pilot, No Night Out is now an essential part of our support services; playing a vital role in our work to change and save lives. For those experiencing rough sleeping, our teams are highly trained to provide trauma-informed care. We provide wrap-around support to people at every stage of their journey.

We are sharing our learnings with colleagues across the sector, including through the Homewards programme and its six flagship locations. We believe No Night Out can play a key role, as locations look to move towards more preventative approaches that tackle all forms of homelessness including street homelessness.

We hope that one day our services will no longer be needed, as prevention leads the way for the eradication of homelessness. Our overall vision is to create a society where street homelessness no longer exists, and everyone has a place to call home.

We believe that the No Night Out initiative could play a substantial role in making this possible.

To find out more about our work, please visit: