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​Hieronder vindt u het wekelijks overzicht van Habitact. Het Habitact-netwerk​ is een Europees uitwisselingsplatform voor lokale thuisloosheidsstrategieën



Weekly Mailing


HABITACT e-bulletin issue 10 is now available

The March 2012 e-bulletin has been sent out to more than 1000 local contacts across Europe.

As usual, it consists of five sections: HABITACT news, local news, Europe news, local trends, and a focus (this time on EU migration). See the e-bulletin (and past e-bulletins) here.


City of Trento contacts HABITACT

Davide Azzolini from the city of Trento in Italy works for the social services department of the municipality – the department has been involved in a number of actions aimed at tackling problems faced by homeless people.

They are interested in any possible EU funding opportunities and exchanges on local experiences across Europe. They came across the HABITACT website and enquired about membership.

Contact :

Hilton Foundation micro-grants
The Hilton foundation awards grants of up to £10.000 for projects in four chosen areas: disability, children in hospital, homelessness, life-limited children. Please note the next quarterly deadline for grant applications is Tuesday 1 May 2012 at 5.30pm.  You will find their full application pack and guidelines at

Weekly Mailing

Housing First Europe – website and dates of next meetings

The website for Housing First Europe is now available: And the dates for the next meetings in 2012 and 2013 have been fixed.

-13-14 September 2012 in Budapest for all partners to start 13th in the morning and end after lunch on the 14th (the steering group will meet on the Friday 14 September in the afternoon)

-14-15 March 2013 in Glasgow (for test site partners, researchers and steering group only)

-13-14 June 2013 in Amsterdam (final conference)

More information at


European social experimentation project on excluded young people

This project is now underway, and led by Simon Guentner, researcher at the University of Hamburg. Four cities are involved: Malmö in Sweden testing approaches on school dropouts, Hamburg in Germany testing housing-led approaches to youth homelessness, Newcastle in the UK testing preventive approaches on young people leaving care, and Bologna in Italy testing approaches on homeless migrants. Freek Spinnewijn from FEANTSA is involved in the project as an external expert. For more information, contact

Weekly Mailing

HABITACT Peer Review – Thank you to our Ghent colleagues!

Thank you to the Ghent team and all HABITACT members who attended the peer review last week. All presentations will shortly be available in the Members’ area of the HABITACT website, and a meeting report will be sent out to all. We will discuss the peer review in detail at the next HABITACT steering group meeting on Thursday 7 June (day before the European seminar in Brussels on 8 June), and we will also consider proposals for the 2013 HABITACT peer review. Feedback from a number of participants confirmed that we need to reduce the number of participants in HABITACT peer reviews, so that next year we should limit the peer review to approximately 30 people. To be discussed further…


Meeting of Portuguese cities on homelessness

On 5 March 2012, the city of Almada (in the Lisbon region) organised a seminar to gather expertise on tackling homelessness in different Portuguese cities, including Almada, Lisbon, Coimbra, and Setùbal.

There were different approaches to tackling homelessness presented, and different forms of local governance. Lisbon homeless policy and services have a more complex governance mix involving three partners: city administration, Santa Casa Misericordia Lisboa (big religious NGO) and the national Institute for Social Security. Other cities in Portugal tend to have a typical NGO/city relation where NGOs provide most homeless services.

There is quite a bit of local homelessness data available through annual local homelessness mappings in the cities above – we will be sure to add this to the HABITACT online policy bank.

The financial crisis is being felt more than ever in Portugal, but we hope to include some Portuguese cities in the HABITACT network in the future.

The Catholic University of Lisboa is working on a study of homeless migrants in Portugal, and has developed a typology of profiles. The study should be available soon.

New Fund for micro-projects: GIVE EUR-HOPE

GIVE EUR-HOPE (GEH) is a non-profit association which aims to promote the solidarity of EU staff with individuals, families or groups living in poverty and social exclusion in the EU.  GEH aims to provide specific support to associations and NGOs in the EU which combat poverty and social exclusion in EU member states.  Requests for support, which may be submitted at any time by individuals or NGOs working on the ground, are selected according to predefined procedures and criteria.  Projects supported by GEH aim to contribute to combating poverty and social exclusion. They cover principally:

·         the construction or renovation of dwellings and care centres;

·         the setting up of basic health facilities (dispensaries in underprivileged areas, nurses/street nurses);

·         training people on citizenship issues, by informing them about their rights as citizens and imparting the skills required to exercise these rights (literacy support, language classes);

·         initiatives in the socio-cultural field, intended to encourage the sharing of knowledge, including through artistic expression;

·         the setting up or support of professional development and tutorial networks. 

Read more about submitting a project on the GEH website.

 Weekly Mailing


European Seminar on Local Homelessness Strategies – 8 June 2012

This year, our annual seminar in Brussels (co-hosted with FEANTSA and the EU Committee of the Regions) will focus on funding strategies and building the case for homelessness. Themes discussed will include: 
1. Planning and budgeting: How to prioritise?  This session will include presentations on rethinking service provision, areas to make savings, and how to budget a local homeless strategy
2. Diversification of funding sources: This session will look at the different ways of funding homeless policy such as sharing the costs with other authorities (between cities), organizing business groups into policy goals, and the potential of social impact bonds.
3. Cost-effectiveness: This session would look at how to ensure efficiency of spending on homelessness such as testing innovative approaches before mainstreaming them, using cost-benefit analyses, and showing social return on investment.

The full programme will shortly be available online.  Registrations will open on 12th March 2012. There are 120 places for the seminar, and priority goes to HABITACT members. So please contact if you would like us to save a place (or more) for your city.

European Parliament hearing on the European Social Fund – watch the hearing!

On Wednesday 29 February, the Committee for Employment and Social Affairs in the European Parliament organised an expert hearing on the European Social Fund (ESF). The hearing will feed into the drafting of the parliamentary report on the new ESF regulation for 2014-2020, which we hope will support the development of a stream for funding projects and services promoting social inclusion. The three speakers at the hearing gave an insight into how the ESF works locally in Germany, France and Hungary. Note: the webstreaming of the hearing is compatible with internet explorer, is at “17.25.00” minutes, and can be viewed in all European languages.

Weekly Mailing

Report of European seminar on EU free movement co-organised by FEANTSA and the European Parliament

FEANTSA hosted a seminar on EU citizenship, homelessness and free movement on 8th February 2012 in the European Parliament.

All information about the seminar (including seminar report) is available here:


Some research articles on homelessness

Research on women and homelessness in Ireland:

Research on Housing First (on cost-benefit analysis in the US) – see enclosed.


Weekly Mailing



HABITACT welcomes Sandefjord city council!

Sandefjord city council in Norway has joined HABITACT! The city council is a member of the Social Housing Development programme (from homelessness to permanent housing), working closely with the Norwegian State Housing Bank. They are working on capacity building and development of a comprehensive social housing strategy in their own municipality. They would like to develop a Housing First model in their own municipality. The contact person is Sissel Bekkelund ( – we’ll have the pleasure of meeting her at the Ghent peer review.


2012 Ghent Peer Review documents available

The agenda and discussion paper for the Ghent peer review taking place on 8 and 9 March are available in the members’ area of the HABITACT website. If you have forgotten the password, please contact A general email will be sent to all peer review participants tomorrow with the documents. The final list of participating cities is the following: Amsterdam, Antwerp, Baerum, Brussels, Dudley, Esch-sur-Alzette, Gothenburg, Kortrijk, Lucca, Odense, Sandefjord, Stockholm, Tartu, and Verona.


Amsterdam promotes social innovation in Public Mental Health

The Amsterdam Public Health Service has developed a Self-Sufficiency Matrix (SSM-D) tool to measure the self-sufficiency of vulnerable people quickly and easily during intake and over time. Eleven areas of daily life (income, day-time activities, housing, mental health, physical health, family relationships, addiction, general daily skills, social network, social participation, legal) are given a self-sufficiency rating. The G4-USER Academic Collaborative Centre, a Public Mental Health alliance between Public Health Services and universities of the 4 major cities in the Netherlands, is currently detailing plans to gather SSM data in a joint databank and to analyse them. Now would be a unique opportunity for interested European cities to link in; it would facilitate international comparisons of the characteristics and development of the target group and of promising interventions. The project is carried out in collaboration with the European Metropolitan network Institute (EMI). Interested? See more in the document enclosed or contact Nienke Boesveldt N.Boesveldt@DZS.AMSTERDAM.NL


Weekly Mailing 13/02/2012


Special Non-contributory Benefits for EU Migrants: A Tri-city Project

The AIRE Centre is excited to announce the start of a new project funded by the European Commission on 'Special Non-Contributory Benefits for  EU Migrants'. In collaboration with FLAC (Free Legal Advice Centre, Dublin) and Lize Glass (legal consultant and former AIRE intern, Amsterdam) and with the support of our new Skadden fellow Sarah St. Vincent, the project aims to improve the information that EU migrants have about their right to access special non-contributory benefits. Over 15 months, we will be collecting statistical data, holding discussions with other NGOs and lawyers, reviewing decisions of courts and tribunals and analysing the findings to support the sharing of information, development of best practice and increase in capacity of advisers’ and representatives’ knowledge about special non-contributory benefits across the three cities. The first round-table was held in London, 19 January 2012, generously hosted by Skadden Arps LLP.  The second round-table shall be held in Dublin on 1 March 2012. More information shall be provided shortly.  If you have any questions, please contact Esther Lieu


City data on homelessness – Making progress!

We have been collecting data on homelessness (ETHOS 1 and 2) over the last 10 days together with University College London on European cities. We are still however lacking validated data for the following cities, so please get in touch ( if you have the data available: Amsterdam, Athens, Bucharest, Ljublana, Luxembourg, Madrid, Sofia, Vienna, Warsaw.​ 

Weekly Mailing


Call for partners for EU workshop on social rental agencies – need expression of interest by end of this week

The Hungarian branch of Habitat for Humanity is looking for partners to attend a workshop in Hungary this autumn (2012) to discuss and share their expertise on social rental agencies.

The potential partners would need to express their interest by the end of this week at the latest, since the deadline for submitting the project proposal is 15 February 2012.

Travel, accommodation and subsistence costs of the project partners will be covered by the project. Therefore partner organisations will have no budgetary or administrative tasks, and they won’t need to contribute to the costs of the actions. Partners are invited to attend a 3-day workshop in Hungary and share their expertise.

See more about the project enclosed, and about the “Europe for Citizens” programme call for proposals here (action 2, measure 3 “Support to projects initiated by civil society organisations).


Ghent peer review: registrations closed

The registrations for the Ghent peer review on 8-9 March 2012 are now closed. Participating cities include: Amsterdam, Baerum, Brussels, Dudley, Esch-sur-Alzette, Gothenburg, Helsinki, Kortrijk, Lucca, Odense, Tartu, Verona, and of course Ghent! The final agenda and peer review discussion paper will shortly be available. If participants have any practical questions, please contact


Weekly Mailing


Call for information: University College London compiling European city data on homelesness

Lucia Corno, economist working for the CReAM in London (part of University College London) has contacted us about a comparative study they are carrying out on social and homeless policy.

To this end, they are compiling a database of homelessness data in EU cities (namely ETHOS 1 and 2). They would like to work with FEANTSA and HABITACT to validate the data, or fill any data gaps that currently exist.

They are currently lacking data for the following cities: Amsterdam, Athens, Berlin, Bratislava, Bucharest, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Kiev, Madrid, Moscos, Paris, Vienna, and Warsaw. If your city is in this list and you have recent data on homelessness, feel free to send it to


A look across the Atlantic: US Report on homelessness in 29 cities
The U.S Conference of Mayors issued its annual report on homelessness and hunger in December 2011. The report focuses on the results of a survey issued to 29 cities. The survey can be found here. The full article can be found here.  The main findings of the survey were:

  • 42% of the 29 cities surveyed reported an increase in homelessness. The report found that the increase in homelessness is driven more by persistent unemployment rates than by foreclosures and evictions.
  • Unemployment was the number one response to the survey as the cause of family and individual homelessness. Lack of affordable housing was the second.
  • Respondents to the study mentioned that HUD's Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing program was crucial to the implementation of various programs to address homelessness.
  • 70% of emergency shelters surveyed reported turning away homeless people seeking help because there was no more capacity. The majority of cities also expect a decline in funding/resources for emergency shelters in the future.

Weekly Mailing


Happy New Year…May 2012 be a great year for all!



Webinar today:  “Putting the Pieces Together: Primary Care and Behavioural Health Services in Permanent Supported Housing (PSH)”

Communities and policymakers in the US see the potential for permanent supportive housing to end chronic homelessness and improve the lives of those who have experienced it. To provide supports that are appropriate to each individual, PSH strategies coordinate services and funding from many sources. This webinar will present approaches to integrating PSH and health care, featuring model programs in the field and comments from national policy leaders. Speakers include: Graydon Andrus, Downtown Emergency Service Center, Seattle; Sam Tsemberis, Pathways to Housing, Vermont;  Jennifer Ho, USICH; and Charlene LeFauve, SAMHSA.

The webinar will take place from 21h00-22h30 Brussels time! The HABITACT coordination team will register, so is happy to provide feedback to those interested and who cannot take part.

Register here:


Partner Search for DAPHNE programme: Child homelessness/Runaway youths

The University of Wolverhampton in the UK is looking for partners to work on a Study Relating To ‘Children and Young People Rough Sleepers who are Runaways and Homeless’ and Victims of Sexual Abuse/Exploitation and Violence on the Streets, aiming to develop policy, strategy and knowledge transfer activities to support this group (see project description enclosed). The project would last 24 months (probably starting in 2013), would involve a wide range of partners (Universities, cities, NGOs, law enforcement agencies, etc), and would require some co-financing from partners since the Commission would fund up to 80% of the project. If you are interested in joining the Wolverhampton partnership, please contact Paramjit Singh or  +44 (0)1902 322360. The deadline for submitting proposals is 29/03/2012.  See more here about the call for proposals


Request from the city of Rennes in France

A junior officer (David Savelli) from the local homelessness department of the city Rennes is doing research on Housing First, and is looking for a city/project to do an internship on Housing First from 21 June to 21 July 2012.

If your administration is taking interns this summer and interested in welcoming David, please contact



Weekly Mailing



HABITACT is involved in two EU social experimentation bids

Under PROGRESS (the EU funding programme on employment and social solidarity), a call for proposals on social experimentation was published earlier this year targeting financial support at countries embarking on welfare reforms. The funds of this call will enable countries to experiment policy changes in the social field before implementing them, if successful, on a wider scale. HABITACT is involved in two bids, one submitted by the French government and one submitted by the Municipality of Amsterdam, both testing policies in the area of homelessness and active inclusion of vulnerable groups. This effectively means that HABITACT cities may have the opportunity from 2013 to take part in more European research/exchange events. See more here about the PROGRESS call and contact us at for specific information about the two bids.


E-Bulletin issue 9 out now!

Issue 9 of the HABITACT e-bulletin has now been published. In addition to local and EU news on homelessness, it contains a brief focus on criminalisation and homelessness. You can download the e-bulletin here.


Meeting with US student

HABITACT office met US student, Cory Potts, from Washington University. He is researching the post-judgment phase of homeless people who have been fined for “misuse” of public space e.g. how does a criminal record affect attempts to get access to housing. He is currently studying the process in a few Belgian cities. More information, contact


HABITACT office contacted by German tourist

We received an unusual message from a German tourist who cannot cancel his hotel booking in Venice (Italy) for 26 and 27 December, and who therefore wishes to contact the city of Venice to see if the hotel booking can be used to house two homeless people for two nights. Christmas tends to bring out generosity in people…


Weekly Mailing



European seminar on local homeless strategies 2012 – Save the date!

The Committee of the Regions, HABITACT and  FEANTSA will host the 2012 seminar on local  homeless strategies in Brussels on Friday 8 June 2012. The theme of the seminar will focus on the financing of local homeless strategies at different levels (EU, national, regional, local). This will also be an opportunity for cities to learn more about the reform of the EU structural funds and the use of the funds from 2014 to 2020. A draft programme will be available early next year. For more information, contact



3rd URBACT Call for Proposals for the Creation of Thematic Networks – Homelessness in the list of priorities

On 9 December 2011, the URBACT programme (and EU programme which funds transnational exchanges between cities) published a third and last URBACT Call for Proposals for the creation of up to 19 new Thematic Networks. One of the 8 priorities is the following: “Promoting the active inclusion of specific groups (e.g. young people, the elderly, immigrants, women, homeless people, etc). The deadline for submitting projects is 15 March 2012. If a HABITACT city is familiar with the URABACT programme and wishes to set up a project with other partners, please contact us at More information about the call is available here:



Weekly Mailing



Ghent peer review 2012 – registrations open

The city of Ghent will host a HABITACT peer review on 8 and 9 March 2012. A background note is available in the Members’ area of the HABITACT website (see Documents section). There are a limited number of places for the peer review, and cities can send a maximum of two delegates. Priority goes to HABITACT cities, and a few cities external to HABITACT will also be invited. Some delegates of the Housing Working Group of FEANTSA will also be present at the meeting. We would invite cities in HABITACT to register before the Xmas holidays in order to have an idea of numbers. To register, send an email to

Time for action on use of the EU Structural Funds from 2014-2020

The EU is currently making decisions on the use of the EU Structural Funds from 2014-2020. The Commission published a package of regulations on the funds in the form of a new Cohesion package in October 2011.  This creates some interesting opportunities for using the European Social Fund (ESF) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to fight homelessness. The proposal is overall strong in the area of poverty and social exclusion. See the full package here. FEANTSA has prepared a response to this package (see attached), which we hope can help to lobby for homelessness to be a priority in this new framework. We would invite you to send this document to the ESF or ERDF agency in your country. For information contact



Have your say on the European Union Programme on Social Change and Innovation


The EU Programme for Social Change and Innovation (PSCI) is being proposed as an instrument to support employment and social policies. It is part of the Commission's proposal for EU regional, employment and social policy for 2014-2020. Enrico Rossi, president of the Tuscany region and rapporteur for the forthcoming CoR Opinion on an EU Programme for Social Change and Innovation, invites you to provide preliminary feedback on this new EU Programme. See namely question 5) “What do local and regional players understand by social innovation and experimentation? Including in the context of cooperation with third sector and non-profit bodies on projects for inclusion, entry into the world of employment and combating social exclusion, how do you think social innovation and experimentation should be implemented and what are the real social innovation instruments?”   Feel free to submit your opinion here: