21 August 2018
Urban Poverty

Action Cluster 4: Homelessness

Homelessness is one of the action clusters presented in the Action Plan of the Urban Poverty Partnership. It entails two actions:

Action 8: Ending homelessness by 2030

Action 9: Capacity building for the use of EU funds to end homelessness


What bottleneck do the Actions address?

Homelessness is increasing in all EU Member States, with the exception on Finland. The Finnish example demonstrates that we need to invest in solutions that shift from managing homelessness to ending homelessness. Many cities are faced with increasing homelessness and use their limited and existing resources to fund emergency and short-term housing and shelter. In this instance cities are managing the crisis. European funds have the potential to complement national funds and invest in long-term affordable housing solutions and supports such as Housing First. Despite the capacity of the funds there is a lack of knowledge and shared practicesabout how the European funds can be used in the context of homelessness.


How do the Actions aim to solve the bottleneck?

The Partnership proposes two consecutive actions revolving around the issue of homelessness: ending homelessness by 2030 and promoting capacity-building for the use of the EU funds. The former action has the objective of creating a formal framework to advance the commitment of the EU and the Member States, as agreed under the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). At EU level, effective multi-level engagement is promoted to motivate all relevant stakeholders to end homelessness. The Action further proposes that Member States should develop National Social Inclusion Strategies. The Action regarding capacity building aims to make better use of EU funds (the ERDF, the ESF and the FEAD) via organising training sessions at the managing authority level.


Have steps for implementation already been taken?

FEANTSA, the European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless, ran two capacity building sessions through which brought together people working on ESF to tackle homelessness. A conference held in June 2018 on “Future Challenges for the Homeless Sector in Europe”, during which the participants exchanged practices and further discussed moving towards the 2030 milestone year. 


What is the further planning?

EUROCITIES will conduct a survey among its member cities in the homelessness Working Group. Meanwhile, FEANTSA and URBACT are developing a series of seminars to be held later in 2018 to support cities develop affordable housing solutions, preventing homelessness and vindicating the right to housing. 

As a founding member of the Housing First Europe Hub, FEANTSA has helped to facilitate study visits to Helsinki to meet with leading international experts on Housing First, developed and tailored to the needs of cities, to aid cities who wish to pilot and scale Housing First This is an example of making the shift from managing homelessness to ending homelessness..  

FEANTSA is a founding member of the Housing Solutions Platform, which is a European platform to bring experts together on housing. The platform will provide expertise on how to develop affordable housing solutions

In late 2018 FEANTSA will launch a Cities Toolkit which is designed to provide a framework for cities to combat homelessness.


Who are the Action Leaders?

FEANTSA and URBACT are the leaders of the Action on capacity building. FEANTSA also leads the Action on ending homelessness by 2030. 


Related Activities:

  • Read the final Action Plan of the Partnership and learn about its latest meeting here.
  • Read more about the FEANTSA conference on Future Challenges for the Homeless Sector in Europe (14-15 June 2018, Berlin) here.
  • Have a look at a recent publication related to the issue of homelessness: "Exclusion: vers zéro SDF?" [Exclusion: towards ending homelessness?] here.


Disclaimer: All views expressed in this Action description are solely those of the Urban Poverty Partnership members as stated in the Action Plan and not those of any individual party or entity with which they may be associated.


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