In recent years homelessness has been escalating due to structural factors such as the poor provision of social housing and the expensive private rental market, as well as austerity measures that have seen harsh cuts to welfare and a freeze on housing benefit.
Tackling homelessness is far more complex than simply providing accommodation. Since 2012, Arts and Homelessness International (AHI) has advocated for the role that arts and creativity can play in helping to build resilience, agency, well-being, skills and social connections for those who are or have been homeless.
Led by Professor Nadine Holdsworth, a research report examined initiatives pioneered by AHI, supported by Coventry City of Culture 2021, to re-think and re-position how arts and creativity can change perceptions, policy and outcomes for those who are or have been homeless in Coventry.
It centres attention on two initiatives:
A Legislative Theatre project to refresh Coventry City Council’s homelessness policy and rough sleeper strategy via co-production methodologies.
HOME: A arts and homelessness festival (HOME festival) that ran from 9-16 October 2021 to coincide with World Homelessness Day on 10 October.
The report examines key findings resulting from these initiatives, the co-production methodologies they employ and explores how multiple stakeholders narrate and understand their participation.