The Housing First model has been tested since 2013 in Belgium, led by the Housing First Lab established by the PPS Social Integration. After an initial test phase, 25 Housing First projects are up and running all around Belgium in 2022.

In 2012 the Belgian government published the Anti-Poverty plan which laid the ground for the establishment of Housing First around Belgium. These favourable conditions led to public and private actors in Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent, Charleroi and Liège to concretely test Housing First practices.

The first testing phase took place from 2013 until 2016 in three medium-sized cities: Hasselt, Sint-Jans-Molenbeek and Namur. The results of the pilot project showed that 86% of the people places in  Housing First projects following the core principles were still housed after the three-year testing phase ended. This testing phase therefore proved to be successful and as a result, 25 Housing First projects are established in Belgium (as of 2022). In addition to that, the Housing First Belgium-LAB got established,  which is a public structure that provides support and technical assistance to the Housing First services in Belgium.

Our partners in Belgium


    FEANTSA is the European Federation of National Organisations Working with the Homeless. We are the only European NGO focusing exclusively on the fight against homelessness. Our goal is an end to homelessness in Europe. We have over 130 member organisations from 28 countries. Our members are predominantly NGOs working with homeless people, but also include other stakeholders involved in the fight against homelessness such as public authorities, social housing providers, foundations, and research entities. FEANTSA supports the scaling up of Housing First in Europe through the Housing First Europe Hub. We believe that Housing First is the best approach to ending homelessness. Our work aims to make Housing First the mainstream policy response to homelessness, which we push through our thematic work and our platforms.

  • POD Maatschappelijke Integratie (Belgian Public Planning Service for Social Integration)

    The Belgian Public Planning Service (PPS) for Social Integration was established by the Royal Decree of 12 December 2002. It manages the Belgian minimum income scheme for people of active age, and is responsible for preparing, developing, and coordinating the Belgian policy on the fight against poverty so that fundamental social rights are guaranteed to everyone in a sustainable manner. After the Belgian Housing First experiment from 2013-2016, the PPS for Social Integration consolidated its coordinating role by creating the Housing First Lab, the Belgian centre of expertise on Housing First, enabling exchange of practices and knowledge between the different stakeholders. It also developed a network of international contacts, with several partners following the Train the Trainer organised by the Housing First Europe Hub. The Housing First Lab is also the driving force of several grant programmes, with federal funding from the National Lottery, to which local partners can subscribe. In this way, the PPS for Social Integration aims to further expand the Housing First model and monitor its fidelity, while keeping a sharp eye on developments in the field.


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    Geert De Bolle

    Housing First Lab

    Country: Belgium

    Languages: DutchEnglish

    “For me, Housing First is about dignity. By offering people back a home that is really theirs, you give them so much more: freedom and autonomy, life chances, future, happiness”
      Geert has been the Dutch coordinator of the Housing First Lab since 2018. He lives in Kortrijk, is married and has three grown-up children, who are gradually leaving home. He enjoys travelling, long walks and board games. Geert is a trained social worker and had 15 years of experience within the local OCMW operation where he was responsible for the reception and guidance of homeless people. From this work, he got to know the ideas of Housing First. Later in life, he started university studies in social work at Ghent University.    

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    Muriel Allart


    Country: Belgium

    Languages: French

    Muriel is a Psychologist with 10 years of experience in Harm Reduction. She has been a Housing First Manager since 2013 – including ACT + ICM team management – and has rehoused more than 50 clients to date. As a Housing First trainer, Muriel shares her expertise in Harm Reduction, Recovery, Peer work, Crises management, and Violence.

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    Peter Brepoels

    Steunpunt Mens en Samenleving

    Country: Belgium

    Languages: DutchEnglish

    Peter started to work in youth and young adult care in the nineties, being focused on youth at risk of becoming homeless or young adults being homeless. At the time some of his older colleagues advised him to lower his expectations as to what could be achieved. He continued working, and 10 years later, caught himself being that older colleague telling the younger ones to ‘not put their hopes up too high’. After he discovered the Housing First approach, he learnt that his initial hopes of achieving positive outcomes for homeless youth could be realised, and became a Housing First trainer.

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    Peter-Jan Heylenbosch

    Goodmen services – Freelancer

    Country: Belgium

    Languages: DutchEnglish

    Peter-Jan started working in day shelter for homeless people during his studies, combined with working in the crisis shelter and night shelter in the city of Ghent. In 2012, he started his job as a Housing First support worker for the public welfare of Ghent, this project was part of the Belgian Housing First project, funded by the Belgian government. I was then asked by SAM VZW to assist in the Flemish housing first training to provide insights from his daily practice. His interest on Housing First still growing he took part of the Hub’s Train-the-Trainer, followed by the Outreach! Course organized by SAM Vzw Belgium. He still works as a Housing first support worker for the city of Ghent, and provide the Housing First and Outreach! courses for he Flemish region and as a freelance commissioned by SAM vzw Belgium.

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    Rémi Dekoninck

    Diogènes (Station Logement)/ Projet Lama

    Country: Belgium

    Languages: French

    Rémi has 20 years of experience working in the social sector, with experience in a wide range of social and homeless services, including:

    • Social Worker since 2000
    • Social Housing 2000
    • First Line social services 2002-2005
    • Family Planning 2005-2016
    • Therapeutical community 2013-2018
    • Social school teacher 2016-2018
    • Health services for drug addictions 2018- now
    • Housing First worker 2018-now
    • Housing First Trainer: 2019- now

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    Thomas Lambrechts

    Capuche asbl

    Country: Belgium

    Languages: French

    Development of associative project for more than 20 years. I have worked in the fields of culture, politics, sport/leisure and real estate. Investing 100% in HF4Y projects since 2021.