Limerick homeless services boss to head up new national office 

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Rob Lowth, the newly appointed National Director of Housing First

THE former Head of Homeless Services for Limerick City and County Council, Rob Lowth, has been appointed National Director of the Housing First Office, which was launched last yesterday by The Housing Agency.

Housing First aims to eliminate homelessness for people with a history of rough sleeping and long-term use of emergency homeless accommodation, who 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 housing and health supports delivered mainly in the person’s home.

Under Mr Lowth’s leadership, the new office will be responsible for coordinating and driving a cross-Government approach to the Housing First national strategy.

Working in partnership with local authorities, including Limerick City and County Council, the HSE, non-Government agencies and Approved Housing Bodies the office will support regional and local delivery of the Housing First programme. It will also oversee performance on the delivery of agreed Housing First targets and evaluate the processes used in implementing the strategy.

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Welcoming Mr Lowth’s appointment, Housing Agency chief executive Bob Jordan said the new Housing First National Office would help drive the Government’s targets to provide a minimum of 1,319 additional Housing First tenancies by end 2026, bringing the total number of people supported under the Housing First programme to around 2,000.

“Rob Lowth has extensive experience in delivering services to people experiencing homelessness. Previously, he served as Head of Homeless Services for Limerick City and County Council.

“We are delighted to have him on board as the new National Director for Housing First, and look forward to drawing on his expertise in the coming months and years to continue to provide sustainable, permanent homes for the most marginalised people affected by homelessness,” Mr Jordan added.