Press Release: Housing First successful in ending long term homelessness

Posted: Apr 17, 2023 / By: Communications Categories:
Press Release: Housing First successful in ending long term homelessness


Monday, 17th April 2023

Housing First successful in ending long term homelessness

- High sustainment rate of 86% a key indicator of the success of the programme, according to The Housing Agency -


The tenancy sustainment rate for Housing First tenants is 86 per cent, demonstrating the positive impact of the programme in addressing long-term homelessness. That's according to The Housing Agency where the Housing First National Office is based.  Today (17th April 2023) the Housing First National Office are holding a conference exploring the impact of the programme while also raising key themes aimed at supporting front line staff in Local Authority, HSE and homeless organisations since the introduction of Housing First Nationally in 2018.


Housing First aims to eliminate homelessness for people with a history of rough sleeping and long-term use of emergency homeless accommodation. Tenants of Housing First will have complex needs around mental health, substance use, physical health, and other social and behavioural challenges. It provides direct access to permanent housing, together with intensive tenancy and health supports delivered in a wrap around team mainly in the person’s home.


Since the introduction of Housing First in Ireland 865 tenants have been supported, with 240 tenancies created in 2022 alone.


Commenting ahead of the conference, Rob Lowth, National Director of the Housing First National Office, said: "Housing First is a person-centred approach to helping people who are experiencing long-term homelessness and who may require additional supports. By providing people with a stable and secure home first, we can then work with them to help them to overcome other issues they may face. The fact that almost ninety per cent of the tenants we have supported so far have been able to sustain their tenancy proves that the Housing First programme is effective and gives the individuals an opportunity to be housed in some cases for the very first time.


"The Housing First National Office looks forward to continuing supporting both the Statutory and NGO sectors to support Housing First tenant and reduce long-term homelessness."


The theme of the Housing First conference taking place in Athlone today and tomorrow is "Where would Ireland be without Housing First". Speakers include:

  • Dr. Sam Tsemberis, who founded the Housing First programme in New York in 1992:
  • Dr, Ronni Greenwood, University of Limerick, who conducted the national evaluation of Housing First.
  • Mr. Joe Doyle, HSE National Social Inclusion Office, whose work focuses on ensuring the required health supports are in place to support Housing First tenants.


Further information about Housing First is available here:




Contact: Sorcha MacMahon / Emily Brennan, Alice Public Relations, Tel: 087-7585337 / 086-1658629, Email:


Notes to Editors:

Rob Lowth, Dr Sam Tsemberis and Dr Ronni Greenwood are available for media interview.


About The Housing Agency

The Housing Agency supports the development of sustainable communities across Ireland. It works to meet the nation’s housing needs by:

  • Rolling out new housing projects and co-ordinating programmes that can transform how we live. 
  • Using data and research to provide evidence-based solutions.
  • Advising the Government on housing policies.
  • Collaborating with all those involved in the housing sector in Ireland to ensure we are working as effectively as possible. 


A State-funded body governed by an independent Board, The Housing Agency works mainly with the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, local authorities and non-profit housing providers.


Follow The Housing Agency on Twitter: @HousingAgencyIE.