Mayor Boris Johnson has awarded a grant of £56,000 to Veterans Aid, the charity for UK veterans in crisis, to enable it to provide emergency temporary accommodation for homeless veterans.
City Hall says the funds will contribute to a programme that includes alcohol treatment as well as education and training projects.
Announcing the grant allocation, Mayor Johnson said: “Although the number of veterans on our streets is thankfully low I’m determined to ensure that the small numbers who do end up sleeping rough have access to the right kind of services as fast as possible.
“Working with a specialist charity like Veteran’s Aid, we can make sure this happens and ensure that those who risked their lives keeping our country safe are given the support they need to turn their lives around.”
Dr Hugh Milroy, CEO of Veterans Aid said: “We are delighted to be receiving this money from the Mayor with whom we have worked closely.
“I see this money as recognition of Veteran Aid’s expertise in dealing with homelessness among the veteran community and a real bonus in terms of helping us to provide immediate help to those men and women in crisis who seek our help.”
The grant is in addition to a £300,000 funding package aimed at tackling homelessness among ex-service personnel which the Mayor undertook to provide following lobbying by the Conservative group on the London Assembly.
The group had proposed an amendment to the Mayor’s 2013/14 budget ring-fencing funds for veterans.
Accepting the proposal, the Mayor said in February: “It seems to me that veterans have more than earned their right to priority access and benefits from our public services.
“So, following the Conservative Group proposal, I can confirm that I will commit at least £300,000 in supporting homeless people with a UK armed forces background during 2013-14.”