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To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the role of almshouses in local authorities housing vulnerable people after the covid-19 outbreak; and if he will take steps to ensure the continuing viability of almshouses.
Almshouses play an important role in providing affordable homes, and often support, for older and other vulnerable residents in need. I have no doubt that many local authorities across the country similarly value the role that almshouses can play in helping to meet housing need in their area, and that councils will be using their local knowledge to engage with local almshouses providers to assess any scope they may have to help during this period. The Government absolutely values the dedication and work of the trustees and volunteers who run our almshouses, and particularly so during the current pandemic.
The Government has given councils over £3.2 billion additional funding to help them fund essential services for the vulnerable during the pandemic. The Government has also announced that charities across the United Kingdom will receive £750 million to help them continue to deliver services to the vulnerable. This includes £370 million for small and medium-sized charities, through a grant to the National Lottery Community Fund for charities in England.