Systematic review

accommodation

What types of accommodation-based interventions are the most effective?

Project Details

Last updated:

August 4, 2022

Status

Completed

Contact

hello@homelessnessimpact.org

Key reports

There are many ways to provide accommodation. In order to ensure positive outcomes for people who are experiencing homelessness, we must have robust evidence on what types of accommodation interventions are genuinely beneficial to the people receiving them.

The provision of accommodation must be central to any discussions about ending homelessness. Homelessness is a multifaceted and complex issue and many accommodation-based approaches have evolved across the globe to incorporate additional support and services beyond the delivery of housing, while other interventions deliver only emergency housing which might be insufficient to meet all those needs.

So that services can ensure that they are making an impact and improving the lives and outcomes of people experiencing homelessness it is important to take a closer look at the effectiveness of different accommodation-based interventions so that we can learn how to improve housing stability, health, employment opportunities and health of the people who use these services.

Findings

  • Interventions offering the highest levels of support alongside unconditional accommodation are more effective than programmes providing low, or no support
  • Interventions with support programmes tailored to the individual reported better housing stability and health outcomes
  • Basic interventions (ie. those satisfying only very basic human needs like food/shelter) may harm people: they had worse health and housing stability outcomes even when compared to no intervention

How we went about it

This systematic review of qualitative and quantitative evidence has two components.

Firstly, it compares the relative effectiveness of these different housing models and their impact in terms of housing stability and health, but also explores crime, cost, employment and income, capabilities and wellbeing. This is done through a‘network meta-analysis’ for housing and health outcomes which compares each type of intervention against each other

Secondly, this review also draws in the qualitative evidence around the barriers and facilitators for the implementation of these interventions. Brought together, the quantitative and qualitative findings give us a more nuanced understanding to inform the development of new accommodation-based interventions.

What's next

This review highlights the benefits of using a typology to describe different types of interventions and their characteristics. Future evaluations should also attempt to measure the impact on outcomes other than housing stability and health, and in other locations outside North America, which may have very different social welfare systems where different impacts could be expected.

Team

Ciara Keenan, Queen's University Belfast
Sarah Miller, Queen's University Belfast
Jennifer Hanratty, Queen's University Belfast
Terri Pigott, Queen's University Belfast
Jayne Hamilton, Queen's University Belfast
Christopher Coughlan, Queen's University Belfast

Project Details

Last updated:

August 4, 2022

Status

Completed

Funded by

Contact

hello@homelessnessimpact.org

Key reports

What types of accommodation-based interventions are the most effective?

Topic
project dates
October 2020
project leads
hello@homelessnessimpact.org
What types of accommodation-based interventions are the most effective?
There are many ways to provide accommodation, and in order to ensure positive outcomes for people who are experiencing homelessness, we must have robust evidence on what types of accommodation intervention are genuinely beneficial to the people receiving them.
Campbell UK & Ireland
Queen’s University Belfast
Centre for Evidence and Social Innovation
Thanks to our partners
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