Edinburgh charities compete for funds
May 24th 2009
Homeless charities in Edinburgh have been forced to close as Edinburgh City Council launches a new 'robust tendering' process in which they must compete for funding.
Following London mayor Boris Johnson's bid to end homelessness in London by 2012, the City of Edinburgh Council recommended that charities in the city go head-to-head over funding to give the best quality service. Council leaders have imposed restrictions on certain charity funding.
A spokeswoman for Edinburgh City Council said, "The finance committee is awarding contracts in five key areas. First in providing advice and information to people threatened with homelessness; emergency services for people at risk of sleeping rough; help to set up a new home; help to find a house with a good private landlord, and housing support services to help people keep their homes.
"The introduction of these new services will mean a better quality of service for those who come to us for support and advice."
In order to win a contract each charity must make a plea to the council stating how they can provide the best service in each area, but charities have criticised the new process because those not awarded funding will find it impossible to compete with the services provided by the council. Since the start of the year, the scheme has already forced The Edinburgh Furniture Initiative and Shelter Edinburgh's Families Project to close.
Contracts have been awarded to around eight charities since January including The Bethany Christian Trust and Edinburgh Cyrenians Trust. The council intends to transfer all charity work to the new scheme by 1st May 2009.