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London Councils PLUS Project: Pan-London Umbrella Support for Homelessness Agencies.


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LDAN is working with Homeless Link and Shelter to support frontline services that provide services to homeless people. Funded by London Councils and running from April 2013, the project aims to provide support, specialist advice, training, capacity building opportunities and a full-range of other infrastructure support to front-line agencies providing support to equalities groups around homelessness.


The PLUS Project consists of:

  • Forums – focussing on recent policy changes, innovations in service delivery and to network with colleagues
  • Good practice events – focussing on topics such as health, welfare reform, homeless women and young homeless people
  • Training – face to face as well as webinars, podcasts and e-learning courses, for example homelessness law, allocations, funding and equalities
  • A mentoring programme - including mentoring skills training and matching scheme
  • Briefings - including homelessness policy, welfare reform and homelessness statistics
  • A monthly ebulletin – including details of homelessness related events, news, funding and partnership working opportunities and agency news
  • Bi-monthly LDAN News – looking at drug and alcohol issues in London in detail
  • Information and support - around diversifying funding, partnership opportunities and improving services to protected equalities groups
  • Information on trends – for example young homeless people and homeless migrants.


The PLUS Project aims to provide support and advice to over 200 agencies, and more personalised support to at least 2 agencies from every London borough. For more information please see this leaflet (PDF)


If you would like to know more about the PLUS Project, please contact Paul Anders, DrugScope / LDAN Senior Policy Officer – paul.anders@drugscope.org.uk


About London Councils:

London Councils is committed to fighting for more resources for London and getting the best possible deal for London’s 33 councils. To read about London Councils’ grants funding and the work of some of the groups we support please visit www.londoncouncils.gov.uk/grants


Homelessness report

LDAN has produced a report on homelessness (PDF) providing an overview and update of key issues for policy and practice, and summarising some of the topics explored at the LDAN forums, as well as highlighting innovations in meeting the needs of rough sleepers and homeless individuals with histories of dependency and complex needs. It also provides directions to the resources accrued over the lifetime of the project, which will remain on the LDAN website for the continued benefit of project participants and others.

Homelessness briefing

LDAN has produced a briefing (PDF) to support the work of the forum. Reviewing the major elements of Government of policy and recent trends over the last 12 months, the briefing is designed to support the needs of frontline staff, policy officers and anyone else working in the substance misuse and homelessness sectors.

Homelessness and Substance Misuse Network Events:


Latest events:


London Councils Pan-London Umbrella Support: Spotlight on fair access to services – January 2015

The first DrugScope LC PLUS event of 2015 was held at Voluntary Action Islington and served as a spotlight on fair access to services. Paul Anderson (Policy Manager, Homeless Link) spoke about the complex and changing social security entitlements of EU migrants; Ben Tovey (London Hub Manager, Shelter) spoke about Shelter’s advice services in London and Ligia Teixeira (Head of Research and Evaluation, Crisis) provided an overview of their recent ‘Turned Away’ report. Later, the group split into two workshops discussing how to get the most out of working with Jobcentre Plus and supporting people at risk from illegal money lending – or loan sharks. The workshops were led respectively by Susan Biss (Partnership Manager for Homelessness, Jobcentre Plus) and Karen O’Neill (Liaise Officer, England Illegal Money Lending Team)


Meeting notes (PDF)


Letter of introduction to JCP for homelessness services (WORD)


Agenda (PDF)


Ben Tovey - Shelter (PDF)


Connect London leaflet - Shelter (PDF)


Jobcentre Plus FAQ sheet (PDF)


Karen O'Neill - Illegal money lending team (PDF)


Paul Anderson - Changing benefit entitlements of EEA migrants (PDF)




Public service reform – November 2014

2014 concluded with a packed agenda looking at several aspects of public service reform, their implications and how services can navigate a safer course through choppy waters. Paul Anders (Senior Policy Officer, DrugScope) opened the meeting with a policy update looking at a number of recent developments in drug policy and welfare reform. He was followed by Ruth Goldsmith (Communications Manager, DrugScope) who provided an overview of DrugScope’s recent Making the case resource, then by Sam Thomas (Programme Manager, the MEAM coalition) who outlined the findings from the recent Voices from the Frontline report with partners from the homelessness, substance use, offender support and mental health sectors. Ellie Cumbo (Policy Manager, Clinks) provided the final presentation with a comprehensive look at the significant Transforming Rehabilitation reforms. The forum was chaired by David Mackintosh of the London Drug & Alcohol Policy Forum


LC PLUS – Policy Update - Paul Anders, DrugScope (PDF)


Transforming Rehabilitation - Ellie Cumbo, Clinks (PDF)


Making the Case - Ruth Goldsmith, DrugScope (PDF)


Voices from the Frontline - Sam Thomas, MEAM (PDF)


Violence against women and girls, substance use and specialist services for women - March 2014

The final London Drug and Alcohol Network LC PLUS forum was held at the end of March at the Guildhall. Chaired by David Mackintosh of the London Drug and Alcohol Policy Forum, the agenda looked at the complex area of violence against women and girls (VAWG); services for women involved in prostitution, the availability of refuge spaces in London for women with substance use support needs and good practice for services making specialist provision for women. Paul Anders (Senior Policy Officer, LDAN/DrugScope) opened the meeting with a short policy update. Sarah Easey, (Programme Manager at the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime or MOPAC) followed by introducing the London VAWG Strategy Refresh. Gemma Lousley (Policy and Engagement Officer, LDAN/DrugScope) then presented some of the key findings from the AVA/DrugScope report The Challenge of Change, which focuses on improving services for women involved in prostitution. Sim Mandair (Senior Outreach Worker, Solace Women’s Aid) introduced the forum to key findings from the AVA/Solace Women’s Aid report Case by Case, which highlights the scarcity of refuge spaces in London for women with histories of substance use and other support needs. Maggie Boreham (Team Manager, Blenheim CDP Evolve) concluded the meeting by providing an overview of the services for women that Blenheim CDP provides, and how they help to address the particular needs that many of their clients present with.


The Challenge of Change: Improving services for women involved in prostitution and substance use - Gemma Lousley, DrugScope (PDF)


Hidden Shames: Working with Female Drug Users. The role of the practitioner - Maggie Boreham, Blenheim CDP (PDF)


LC PLUS – Policy Update - Paul Anders, DrugScope (PDF)


The Mayor’s VAWG strategy - Sarah Easey, MOPAC Programme Manager (PDF)


Refuge provision in London for survivors of domestic violence who use alcohol and other drugs or have mental health problems - Shannon Harvey, Sim Mandair, Jennifer Holly (PDF)



Spotlight on LGBT homelessness, health and substance use - December 2013

The first LDAN Spotlight on LGBT Homelessness, Health and Substance Use, part of the London Councils-funded Homelessness PLUS project, was held at the Guildhall on 5th December, focussing on supporting agencies to work with LGBT clients, and particularly, how non-specialist organisations can better meet the particular needs of this client group. Marcus Roberts (Director of Policy & Membership DrugScope / LDAN) welcomed attendees to the new forum; Paul Anders (Senior Policy Officer, LDAN / DrugScope) gave a general policy update focussing on the forthcoming DrugScope/Recovery Partnership State of the Sector Research; Monty Moncrieff (Chief Executive, London Friend) talked about London Friend’s experience with its clients and also trends in substance use specific to LGBT clients; Nick Wallbridge (Housing Advice Worker, Stonewall Housing) spoke about patterns that they encounter as a specialist organisation, including highlighting some difficulties that local authorities sometimes have in assessing the needs of LGBT clients. Finally, Ruth Overton (Head of Communications, PACE) wrapped up the Spotlight with an interactive session looking at heteronormativity, and how non-specialist services can improve their support and advice to LGBT clients.


Agenda (PDF)


LDAN Policy Update (PDF)


Monty Moncrieff (PDF)


Nick Wallbridge (PDF)


Ruth Overton (PDF)


First LDAN Homelessness Forum - August 2013


The first LDAN Homelessness Forum, part of the London Councils-funded Homelessness PLUS project, was held at the Guildhall on 1st August, focussing on supporting agencies to work with migrant groups, particularly those with unclear or no recourse to public funds. Martin Barnes (Chief Executive, LDAN / DrugScope) welcomed attendees to the new forum; Paul Anders (Senior Policy Officer, LDAN / DrugScope) gave a general policy update; Jonathon Graham (Policy Officer, Homeless Link) provided an update on their dual diagnosis project; Ewa Sadowska (Chief Executive, Barka UK) and colleagues spoke about several aspects of their work with A10 migrants in the UK and elsewhere and Mat Davies (Service Manager, Homeless Healthcare) provided information about the innovative Street Med project, which works with homeless and insecurely housed people across London, and has expertise around advocacy for migrants accessing heath services.


Agenda (PDF)


Barka - Personal History, Jerzy (PDF)


Barka - Piotr's story (PDF)


Barka - Chris's story (PDF)


Barka as a social franchise (PDF)


Barka reintegration project (PDF)


Barka - The House Magazine (PDF)


Barka - Reconnection numbers of CEE rough sleepers (PDF)


Homeless Link - Dual Diagnosis (PDF)


LDAN Policy Update August 2013 (PDF)


Street Med Team - working with the NHS (PDF)


Services for women September 2012

LDAN held its Homelessness and Substance Misuse forum on the 26th September at Guildhall. Paul Anders, Senior Policy Officer at Drugscope, provide a brief policy round-up, before Marketa Swaby, Deputy Manager for St Mungo’s Complex Needs Team (North and East) and Rita Martin, a St Mungo’s Complex Needs Worker at the Mare Street Hostel, kicked off with presentations on the meeting’s theme of services for women. Amy Hall, a Clinical Nurse Specialist at the Three Boroughs Health Inclusion team, presented from a statutory perspective.


Rebuilding shattered lives: a service perspective. Marketa Swaby, Deputy Manager St Mungo's and Rita Martin, St Mungo’s Complex Needs Worker (2.3MB PPT)


Women Accessing Services: a statutory perspective. Amy Hall, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Health Inclusion Team (180 KB PPT)


Outreach work and the state of play in London June 2012


The June Homelessness Forum included presentations on outreach work in the capital, an overview of the London policy context following the re-election of Boris Johnson as Mayor of the city, and a look at the latest stats on service provision from the CHAIN database. Jack Edgecombe of Thamesreach and Paula Bennett of the No Second Night Out initiative combined to do the joint presentation on outreach services, while Sarah MacFadyen, a policy officer at Crisis, delivered the policy overview and Homeless Link’s research manager Rachel Coffey looked at the CHAIN findings.


Mayor of London presentation (1MB PPT)


SNAP12 presentation (265KB PPT)


NSNO presentation (5MB PPT)

Policy update presentation (635KB PPT)



Please click on any of the events below to get more information, presentations etc.


Residential treatment services and nursing in the community (March 2012)


New trends and psychologically informed environments (December 2011)

Legal Issues around Housing and Drugs (September 2011)

Dual Diagnosis (March 2011)


Homelessness, the Criminal Justice System, and Resettlement (December 2010)

Vulnerable Families (September 2010)

The Legal Highs Market and Knowing Drugs (June 2010)

Training and working with older homeless people with alcohol problems (March 2010)


Understanding Drugs and the Law (January 2010)


LDAN Homelessness Project Launch (October 2009)

Specialist articles


Room to live, Druglink, March/April 2010 (PDF) Article on an innovative supported housing project in Nottinghamshire that provides high quality self contained flats to homeless people with drug or alcohol problems.

Working in Isolation, Druglink, January/Febrauary 2010 (PDF) Article based on an interview with hostel workers, outlining current issues involved in working with drug and alcohol services.


Bill Puddicombe (CEO Equinox), Housing Crisis, Druglink, March/April 2011 (PDF)


Housing for recovery – Findings from a survey on access to housing for the recovery partnership, Druglink, September/October 2011 (PDF)

Details of homelessness organisations with drug and alcohol services/expertise (PDF)

Joint Action Group on Alcohol in London briefing on housing/homelessness and alcohol (PDF)