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The young and the homeless

8 October 2015

Over the last month we have been taking a look at the causes of homelessness among young people and are highlighting the work of some of the projects we fund that offer a lifeline to vulnerable young people.

We have been focusing on different causes of young homelessness, from health problems to the most common cause: family breakdown.

Last month we asked you to get in touch and let us know how you are helping young homeless people to build a brighter future. Below are some great examples of that great work.

Young man smiling, sitting down at desk

Centrepoint

Helping homeless young people in London and the north east with housing, education, access to mental and physical health services and life skills

Big Lottery Fund grant: £480,000 over five years

“With a grant from the Big Lottery Fund, we launched a youth-led Parliament to speak out for the homeless and it is now in its sixth year.

“Our Centrepoint Parliament is made up of a group of democratically elected young people who have all experienced homelessness. The group is inducted into their new roles and trained in key skills. They are empowered to represent their peers and deliver positive change for young people experiencing homelessness.”

Read Centrepoint’s head of public affairs Paul Noblet’s guest article which focuses on the link between poor health and homelessness and the importance of promoting physical and mental well-being as crucial to living an independent life.

Nature in Mind

A Nottingham-based project run by Framework provides ecotherapy-type services involving anything outdoors that can promote mental well being

Big Lottery Fund grant: £294,000 over three years  

“A lot of people who have mental health problems – and homelessness is part of that – lack a certain amount of direction, purpose or belonging and ‘green exercises’ help people to develop something meaningful again; a sense of purpose or a sense of role. They start growing their own food, making connections with their immediate environment and that gives people a reason to wake up in the morning.

“Nature in Mind isn’t focusing on peoples’ problems, a lot of it is people choosing to come along, looking at the creativity and the enjoyment of nature; it’s very much an invitation to engage.”

Find out more about the success of their ecotherapy work to help homeless people.

St Mungo’s Broadway 

Homeless charity and housing association, providing bed and support to more than 2,500 people a night

Big Lottery Fund grant: £245,660 over three years

“With money from Big Lottery Fund, St Mungo’s Broadway is currently delivering a project with young people at risk of homelessness in south London, providing training and advice to help people to avoid personal crisis and resolve the challenges they face.

“Through our work with homeless people of all ages, we know that support for young adults at critical points can have a huge effect, helping them to avoid dangerous situations, such as rough sleeping or unstable housing.”

Share your stories

If you or your organisation is involved in helping vulnerable young people at risk of homelessness, we would love to hear from you. We want to share as many stories as possible through our blog, Facebook and our Twitter feed.

If you have not got involved yet, there is still time to take part. Send us an email and let us know how you are helping young people build a more positive future.

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