Birmingham City Council

What is Supporting People?

The Supporting People programme aims to help vulnerable people improve their quality of life by providing a stable environment, which enables them to live more independently.

There are many different groups of people who qualify for help under Supporting People. They are:

  • Older or frail elderly people
  • People with mental health problems
  • People with physical or sensory disabilities
  • People with learning disabilities
  • People at risk of offending
  • Teenage parents or pregnant teenagers
  • Young people at risk
  • Young people leaving care
  • Young single homeless people with support needs
  • Homeless families with support needs
  • People with HIV or AIDS
  • People escaping domestic abuse
  • Travellers
  • People who misuse substances.

Supporting People will only pay for housing related services that help people live independently - it does not pay for care services. It would pay for support to:

  • Teach people how to carry out minor repairs and servicing in their home
  • Provide a community alarm service or warden so help is available if it is needed
  • Provide emotional support, counselling and advice
  • Provide advice, advocacy and liaison
  • Teach people how to look after themselves so they can live independently.

Since the programme went live in April 2003, the Supporting People Team has made sure that the organisations they fund provide good quality, cost effective and reliable support to meet the needs of Birmingham's citizens.

Why was Supporting People introduced?
The previous system for funding support services was extremely complicated, with different grants paying for different parts of the service. The providers spent a long time applying for different grants and it did not necessarily meet the support needs of vulnerable people. Now, providers only have to apply for one grant as opposed to five.

Also, in the past, services were more easily accessible to people living in certain types of housing. We want to make it easy for vulnerable people to get the support they need, regardless of whether they live in a housing support scheme, a hostel or general housing.

Supporting People has also meant that there is more sensible planning of services - although some local authorities already had a planning and review system in place, which worked effectively.

What does this mean for me?

If you are a vulnerable person or work with any clients or service users who may need help to live independently then a scheme funded under Supporting People may be able to help.

There are many service providers who specialise in helping the groups of people listed at the top of this page. Select this link to see contact details of providers who may be able to help you (or your client):
How do I get Housing-related Support?

If you would like any further information, please contact the Supporting People Team.

Supporting People Logo