<< Return to intervention list

Day Centres

strength of evidence

Insufficient evidence available

Cost effectiveness

Insufficient evidence available


Insufficient evidence available

What is this intervention?

Day centres for homeless people provide daytime shelter, basic facilities and advice and support with housing and related issues. Facilities generally include hot drinks, food, showers, laundry and internet and are available to people who are rough sleeping or homeless. Day centres often offer various types of support under one roof, including casework and advice, education, training and employment services, and referral and access to health services such as a nurse.

What is its goal?

Day centres vary widely in their aims but overall they seek to provide accessible, open-access, welcoming environments for people who are homeless, to meet their basic needs, and to provide access to support to help them move on from homelessness. Day centre teams usually include volunteers as well as paid members of staff.

What does the evidence tell us?


There are no studies measuring the effectiveness of Day Centres





Where does the evidence come from?

There are currently no relevant studies.

Which groups does it affect?

No evidence is available on which groups this intervention affects.

Which outcomes does it affect? 

No evidence is available on which outcomes this intervention affects

considerations for IMPLEMENTATION

Think carefully about how to attract service users

If you are running a day centre, think about whether the location, ambience and opening hours are appropriate for your user group. Consider offering extended hours or even 24-hour access. A welcoming, comfortable and accessible environment improves engagement. Showers, laundry, storage, allowing pets, and offering additional services such as support with drug and alcohol misuse and veterinarian services can all attract people to your service.

Focus on keeping staff engaged and informed

An engaged, committed and cohesive staff team is very important for a successful day centre. Staff need to be able to communicate genuine care, respect and enthusiasm for service users. Hold regular team meetings to ensure individual cases are coherently managed.

Hire staff with service users in mind

Aim to recruit staff who reflect the age, gender and diversity of your service users. Peer mentors can also improve buy-in from service users.

Simplify funding processes

If you are involved in funding day centres, try to simplify the process and reduce the administration time for staff. For example, collaborate with other commissioners to agree on the data required for effectiveness monitoring.

Try to improve service attendance

Missed service appointments waste resources. Keep good records of attendance to help you predict future attendance rates and identify the most effective tactics to encourage attendance (e.g. text message reminders, posters etc)

<< Return to interventions list
manage cookies