Homeless Link have announced the launch of a new Youth Homelessness Project. This is what they have to say about it -

Over the next 5 years we are aiming to increase the national representation of youth homelessness organisations. We want to identify current gaps in knowledge and practice, and support the sector in improving their response to young people experiencing or at risk of homelessness.

Why Youth Homelessness?

Young people experiencing homelessness are some of the most vulnerable people in society. Our 2018 Young and Homelessness report found 44% of people supported by all homelessness accommodation projects were aged 16-24; this age group make up around 9% of the general population of England. This over-representation highlights a need for a greater focus on youth homelessness, and what can be done to prevent it.

We know that young people’s routes into and experiences of homelessness are usually different from adults. As such it is important our approach is tailored specifically to young people’s experiences and needs.

The Youth Homelessness Project

Our Youth Homelessness project is aligned to the Homeless Link strategic priority to

“identify interventions, opportunities and risks to specifically prevent and tackle youth homelessness”.

The project will support organisations to better respond to young people and their needs, as well as working to have young people included in current and future government homelessness policy.

As Project Manager for our youth homelessness work I’m looking forward to exploring ways in which we can support young people who are particularly marginalised or face particular challenges. We know young people’s experiences of homelessness will be influenced by structural discrimination and inequalities they have experienced. This in turn will impact how they access and engage with available support and services which is why it is important our response is flexible and tailored to their specific needs.

It is also important to me that this work is underlined by a goal to influence change in the systems that disadvantage young people. This change needs to take into account young people’s unique and diverse experiences, with the aim of stopping young people from reaching crisis point.

Get involved

We want to hear from organisations providing homeless support to young people.

We are running two Network Groups in May to begin this work and plan to run additional forums across England. The forums are opportunities for managers and staff or services for under 25 to discuss current challenges and examples of good practice, and explore how Homeless Link can best represent and support your work.

Sign up to our Network Events:

Unable to make an event?

Read the article on the Homeless Link website - launch-of-new-youth-homelessness-project