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Fulfilling Lives: Supporting people with multiple needs

Investing up to £112 million to improve the lives of people with multiple needs
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Total available:
up to £112 million
Application deadline:
See programme details

What’s it all about?

The Multiple and Complex Needs (MCN) Programme funds partnerships of local organisations to work together to improve services for people with multiple and complex needs. Around 60,000 people in England experience multiple and complex needs, defined here as exhibiting at least two of:  homelessness, current/historical offending, problematic substance or alcohol misuse, and mental ill-health. This not only affects their lives, but leads to significant social and economic costs associated with a failure to effectively support them. Our ambition is that the Multiple Needs programme will be threefold:

  1. It will change lives. Individuals experiencing multiple needs will benefit through better established partnerships and networks which best support individuals.
  2. It will change systems. Evidence will be produced showing which elements of the programme are effective. Local and national decision-makers will be encouraged to review and adopt these elements where appropriate.
  3. It will involve beneficiaries. Both positive changes to individuals and system change will be underpinned by the collaborative, genuine and honest involvement of individuals with lived experience.

We have a number of case studies of people who have been assisted by Fulfilling Lives. Read some of the case studies

For up to date information on the funded areas, key date, evaluations and interesting learning please go to http://mcnevaluation.co.uk/

Supportive Quotes

Jon Snow, News Presenter & Chair, New Horizon Youth Centre
“I have worked for some four decades in a project that works with vulnerable and homeless young people and I have rarely ever come across funding targeted directly at supporting people of any age with multiple and complex needs.

“That’s why I am so excited by the Big Lottery Fund’s radically new approach to put £112 million behind bringing the assorted services together behind this needy but difficult group of people. I believe this initiative is going to make life changing differences to the lives of very many people previously regarded as on the margins of society. I’m particularly attracted to the way the Big Lottery Fund has engaged the client groups themselves in designing services.

“In austere and difficult times, the Big Lottery Fund is laying the foundations toward making profound difference. I’m honoured to support their endeavour.”

The Right Honourable Iain Duncan Smith MP, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
"Social Justice is about delivering change to the lives of the most vulnerable. Moving people from dependence to independence. A cultural shift in how we deliver services is critical. This means ensuring every pound we spend delivers life change – no longer simply maintaining those facing multiple disadvantages, but instead tackling the root causes and ensuring people have the support and tools they need to transform their lives.
“The Big Lottery Fund for ‘Fulfilling Lives’ is exactly the right approach – harnessing the knowledge of local organisations and establishing innovative partnerships, in order to provide tailored help to those in need.
“I would like to congratulate the next round of successful bidders for the fund, and I hope that today is a fitting celebration. I look forward to seeing your partnership projects put into action, providing a lifeline to those trapped in disadvantage."

Mitch Winehouse, who alongside family members established The Amy Winehouse Foundation
“Since losing Amy I have been supporting charities that help people who are struggling with an addiction or health issue. I’ve been involved with the Big Lottery Fund since the start of this investment and I’m very excited that successful partnerships are now on the verge of receiving up to £10 million to start helping people with serious and complex problems. This money will bring different organisations together to offer people more tailored support to deal with all the different needs they may have.”

David Blunkett, Labour MP for Sheffield, Brightside and Hillsborough
"In my time in Parliament and before, I have had the privilege of working with and supporting many organisations doing phenomenal work, but know they have often been frustrated by the lack of joined up thinking. It is particularly gratifying to see the voice of service users reflected in decisions around this investment. After all, it is those users and beneficiaries of services that know best what is needed to turn their lives around. Let's hope this provides a new direction in changing that future."

Noreen Oliver, CEO The BAC O’Connor Centre
"I know from my own personal experience of addiction to alcohol what it means to spend years in a revolving door, lost in a system and culture that can so often result in lives spiralling out of control. I was lucky enough to find an exit route which lead to freedom from dependence and addiction, but so many others are not so fortunate. I therefore welcome this investment from the Big Lottery Fund which has the voice of service users at the very heart of its design. We need to work together to bring an end to those revolving doors – let’s open doors and help people living with multiple and complex needs find a way through."

Russell Brand
"The Big Lottery Fund is investing 100m in people with "complex needs" this means alcoholics, homeless folk, mentally ill people and drug addicts. They will be devising a strategy in collaboration with the beneficiaries- this is a unique and outstanding initiative that will significantly advance our society. The Big Lottery Fund has a simple solution to complex needs- now I might buy a bloody ticket."


Organisation Types

  • Voluntary or community organisation