Greater Manchester Young Person’s Homelessness Prevention programme


The Young Person's Homelessness Prevention programme supports young people at risk of homelessness in the Greater Manchester area.


Key information

  • Social issue

  • Focus area

    Social outcomes
  • Investment type

    Outcomes contract
  • Region

    North West
  • Challenge

    Lack of secure accommodation early in life can have a severe negative impact on a young person’s life chances and can lead to a cycle of homelessness including rough sleeping and deterioration of wellbeing for the young people affected.

    Young adults accounted for around 50% of referrals into the emergency accommodation provision in Greater Manchester during 2020. Experience of these services can have a particularly detrimental effect on young people.

    Greater Manchester set a specific goal to be a national leader in ending rough sleeping and reducing homelessness. Early intervention and preventative support are crucial to keeping young people out of homelessness.

  • Approach

    The scheme is run by Greater Manchester better Outcomes Partnership (GMBOP) and delivered by a network of local partnerships including youth homelessness charity Depaul. Each young person is matched with a dedicated Progression Coach, who works with them to stabilise their home situation or find alternative accommodation, while providing additional support around mental health. The Coach also helps the young people to build the support networks they need to engage in meaningful activity and move towards employment and training.

  • Revenue model

    Bridges partnered with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) to support the design of this project. The service is funded through the GMCA Reform Investment Fund with match funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) Life Chances Fund.

    This is an outcomes-based contract, so the council only pays for measurable improvements in people’s lives. The shared vision for this programme is to prevent homelessness and create self-determined positive outcomes for young people.

  • Impact

    The programme aims to work with 1,500 young people over three years. The original year-long pilot scheme worked with more than 270 individuals, over 75% of whom saw improved outcomes.

  • Our programme vision is to assist young people before their situation becomes unmanageable and they find themselves on the street or without accommodation. We place the young person at the centre of everything we do, so they have the choice and control of their interventions and build a detailed understanding of the circumstances of the young person accessing the service and the systemic barriers they face.


    Rachel O’Connor

    Programme Manager, Greater Manchester Better Outcomes Project

Liam's story:

Liam Cary is in the process of turning his life around after he was referred to the Young Person’s Homelessness Prevention programme. The 26-year-old from Manchester had been sofa surfing since he was 16 after his mother sadly passed away, leaving him in the care of his father, a regular heroin user.

That relationship quickly broke down and the next decade has been spent without stable accommodation and trying to juggle everyday life with significant mental health challenges, so much so that he has been on the verge of suicide on more than one occasion.

Liam says: “The Young Person’s Homelessness Prevention programme has saved my life, it’s as simple as that. Before I was referred, I’d pretty much given up hope of a better future as everything looked so bleak. I was having issues with my current landlord, my mental health was in a really bad place and I had no way of holding down employment.”

“My big aim in 2022 is to qualify as a joiner, secure full-time employment and to have my own place that has a front door. This might not seem a lot for some people, but it would mean a whole new life to me.”

Liam - Manchester Youth Homelessness prevention programme.jpg