West Berkshire Council

Supporting People

A network of organisations offering housing-related support to vulnerable people

Supporting People is a nationwide scheme run by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), enabling people to live as independently as possible by funding organisations that provide support.

People may need housing-related support because they are considered vulnerable - this can be for a variety of reasons, taking into account things like:

  • youth
  • old age
  • risk of domestic violence
  • learning disabilities
  • mental health problems
  • substance misuse
  • physical disability
  • a risk of offending

Some people may benefit from living in a specific supported housing scheme, such as a hostel, women's refuge or sheltered housing for older people. Others may need help from a support worker who visits them wherever they happen to live (also known as 'floating' support).

You can search for a service online for a full directory of local services, plus interactive elements for service providers.

How to access Supporting People Services

You may be referred for Supporting People services by your Housing Officer, Care Manager, Probation Officer, service provider or in some circumstances you can doc icon refer yourself [866kb].  There are many different organisations in the local area that provide support, but be aware that some may have a waiting list or a referral panel.  
You may contact an organisation directly, or you can contact the Contracts and Commissioning Team to discuss your needs.

Short-term services are planned to last no longer than two years, within which time you would be expected to move on from the service. 
All of these short-term services are free.

Long-term services are planned to last more than two years, or indefinitely. 
Usually, your support provider will help you to complete an application form if this is the case.   Applicants will be contacted to arrange a 'fairer charging assessment' which looks at things like which benefits you get and what savings you have.  This helps to understand how much you need to pay toward the support.
Depending on the assessment of your financial circumstances, you might have to pay a reduced amount, or nothing at all.
We will also give you advice about what other benefits you might be able to claim. 

Who To Contact