Tobias Ellwood’s visit to YMCA Bournemouth last week coincided with the Government announcement on continued funding for supported housing.

The Conservative politician visited the organisation’s offices in Westover Road to discuss the services they provide within the community

This meeting came as the Government confirmed all supported housing funding will be covered by the welfare system.

The announcement followed months of consultation after a Government proposal to fund short-term accommodation through council grants, whereby councils would receive central funding and pay short-term supported housing rents at their discretion.

The decision to retain the current mechanism means residents will claim housing benefit as usual, with their rent normally being paid directly to their landlord.

Jackie Weeden, executive director of YMCA Bournemouth, said: “This decision is very welcome as it shows the Government has listened to our concerns for both the people we support and for our staff, who have been living with uncertainty as to how funding would be maintained.

“This also allows us as an organisation to plan to invest in more housing stock so we can support more people, many of whom are extremely vulnerable.

“During his visit, we also updated Mr Ellwood on the youth and family services we provide throughout the conurbation, and the challenge of continuing this work in the light of reduced local authority funding and of short-term project commissioning becoming the norm.”

Mr Ellwood said: “I’m delighted to be visiting YMCA Bournemouth and hugely appreciate the work they do in the local area.

“The YMCA have such a good record, not just here but across the whole country.

“The concept of looking after those who are going through a dark chapter is so important.

“The key is to make it so that it is only a chapter for these individuals and not the normal situation.”