Guest blog: Helping homeless young people

Today’s guest blog is written by Rachael Taylor, who works for the YMCA, finding and supporting hosts for young homeless people. This isn’t directly related to Evenbreak, but is such an important issue for many of our young men and women that I felt compelled to include it!

ymca logo
Could you help a homeless young person?

You can gain an extra income by letting a young homeless person sleep in your spare room.

If you have a spare room in your home and would like to make a difference in the life of a young person as well as your local community, you may want to consider becoming a Supported Lodgings Host. Supported Lodgings schemes aim to provide homely surroundings to help young people gain the confidence and skills they need to become independent adults. Many young people are unable to live at home with their family. This could be for many reasons including bereavement, overcrowding, family breakdown or risk of abuse.

Hosts come in all shapes and sizes. You could be a family, a couple or a single person. You could be working or unemployed. It can be an opportunity to pass on some of the life skills and experience you have gained such as cooking, cleaning and budgeting. Some hosts feel that they get more back from the young person that they support than they give. The young person can at times become like an additional family member and join in with your social activities and family events. It is immensely rewarding to see a young person develop into a responsible adult who is making the most of the opportunities you have opened up for them. Of course it can be challenging at times too, having a teenager living in your home but you will receive support from the scheme organiser.

To become a host, you need a spare room in a safe home, the ability to listen and respond appropriately, patience and understanding, some awareness of the needs of young people, be able to provide at least one meal a day and a willingness to undertake a criminal records bureau check. In return you will receive a fee towards food and household bills. This varies from scheme to scheme but is normally over £100 per week.

Some schemes are run by the local authority but more often they are run by voluntary sector organisations such as the YMCA. To find out if you have a Supported Lodgings scheme in your area, contact the housing department of your local council.

Rachael Taylor is the Supported Lodgings Host Coordinator at West Bromwich YMCA.

To advertise jobs on Evenbreak go here – http://www.evenbreak.co.uk/employers/
To find jobs on Evenbreak go here – http://www.evenbreak.co.uk/jobs/
To make a donation to Evenbreak go here – https://localgiving.com/charity/evenbreak

8 thoughts on “Guest blog: Helping homeless young people

  1. This is a superb idea – I have more space than I need in my house so will contact my local council and find out if they have a Supported Lodgings scheme. Thanks for that – very interesting information, Rachel.

    Like

    1. The average length of time is between 3 and 6 months Elaine. The maximum for our scheme is 2 years. We also offer a night stop for emergencies which is up to a maximum of 7 nights.

      Like

  2. Out of interest I typed ” supported lodging scheme Camden” into Google search and, although the link I followed was misleadingly narrow (it read “Supported lodgings in lesbian and gay households for young people 16-21 years who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.”).

    When I got there I found twelve different homelessness housing providers with offering ranging additionally from 1st, 2nd or 3rd generation Scots, to single women, the elderly and families.

    I find it amazing the (hopefully mutually, as Rachael points out) good things that people are doing under our very noses, so to speak, that we’re totally unaware of!

    Like

    1. Out of interest I typed seuroptpd lodging scheme Camden into Google search and, although the link I followed was misleadingly narrow (it read Supported lodgings in lesbian and gay households for young people 16-21 years who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. ).When I got there I found twelve different homelessness housing providers with offering ranging additionally from 1st, 2nd or 3rd generation Scots, to single women, the elderly and families.I find it amazing the (hopefully mutually, as Rachael points out) good things that people are doing under our very noses, so to speak, that we’re totally unaware of!

      Like

Leave a Reply to Elaine Sturgess Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s