SG2.1: Contribute to increasing the provision of culturally appropriate, secure, quality accommodation for Travellers
In 2018 trustees made grants to five organisations to support work focused on the following outcomes. Any further grant rounds for this programme will be advertised on this website, or Funding Point; Activelink or GrantTracker (NI).
Traveller Accommodation Grant Programme Outcomes
Outcome 1: strengthened support through organising and campaigning
- A greater number of activist groups (particularly young people) have mobilised to hold local and national government to account for the under-provision of accommodation.
- A broad-based coalition of national and regional voluntary organisations has mobilised around an agreed campaign to improve accommodation outcomes.
Outcome 2: improved awareness of and attitude towards need for change in how accommodation is being delivered
- Duty bearers – local authority management, politicians and others have acknowledged the need for change and are acting accordingly.
- Increased awareness of the particular challenges and obstacles to the provision of accommodation among specific target groups.
- Media and other analysis on housing and homelessness more likely to include reference to the particular issues facing Travellers.
Outcome 3: Strengthened alliances
- Greater number of Traveller and non-Traveller ‘champions for change’.
- Improved relationships between stakeholders, building solidarity and alliances.
Outcome 4: improved policies, legislation and change to current practice in the delivery of accommodation
- There is an increased body of evidence to inform changes in policy and practice.
- Local and national structures charged with the delivery of accommodation are operating more effectively.
- Legislation, policy and structures have changed to create a framework which better facilitates the delivery of accommodation.
Key principles underpinning the grant programme include:
Traveller participation – SSGT recognises that policies and programmes targeted at Travellers will not be effective without the meaningful participation of Travellers at the design, implementation and monitoring stages. SSGT is committed to removing barriers to Traveller participation and expects that funded work will proactively support and facilitate Traveller participation in all aspects of the activities.
Relationship building – SSGT recognises that effecting change in the provision of Traveller accommodation needs partnership and co-operation between a range of individuals and groups. The need to develop trust, build relationships and form alliances should be addressed in the application. Unless relationships are effectively fostered and developed, change is not likely to succeed or be lasting.
Grant Programme Background and Context
In 2017, as part of its periodic examination of the areas of greatest current need in Ireland, SSGT identified the failure to deliver culturally appropriate, secure, quality accommodation for Travellers as a key issue. Following a donation from the Presentation Sisters (NE Province) and in response to this urgent need, SSGT developed the Traveller Accommodation grant programme (TAGP).
The issue is characterised by:
- Low levels of provision of culturally appropriate accommodation for Travellers
- High levels of overcrowding and increasing homelessness amongst Travellers
- Mainstream discussions on housing and homelessness do not identify Travellers as a high risk category. It is not generally known that Travellers are 11 times more likely to be homeless than someone from the general population.
- High levels of racism and discrimination against the provision of accommodation for Travellers.
- Low levels of (or perception of low levels of) cross sectoral solidarity and support.
- Low level of capital budget available to local authorities, and not multiannual so significant developments cannot be planned.
- Local authority planning mechanism (Part VIII) used to provide Traveller accommodation is not effective.
- Legislative provision to ringfence local authority budgets for Traveller accommodation has not been effective.
- Poor transparency in relation to budgets available and plans.
- Local and national government not being held accountable.
- National and local consultative mechanisms have not been effective in improving outcomes.
- Duty bearers are not engaging effectively with Travellers in developing solutions.
- Low levels of political will and leadership for change, particularly at a local level.
- Relatively high percentage of available budget is spent on repairs of existing stock, indicating poor quality developments.