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Life on the Streets: How Nightstop helps
August 13th, 2018
- Blog by Depaul UK Associate Director for Prevention, Nicola Harwood
“My Nan died when I was 16. I lived with her from the age of three up until I was 16 because my Mum went to prison. After my Nan died, my family separated. It all just started from there really, like sleeping in sheds and tents.” - Finn, 18
Finn’s story is one of 10 young people who have shared their story as part of Depaul’s “Life on the Streets” report. Through these interviews, we hear from young people in Depaul accommodation projects about their experiences of rough sleeping in their own words. Put bluntly, these stories are heart breaking.
I think at Nightstop we focus so much on the transformative effective our incredible hosts can have, we sometimes forget the journeys that young people have been on to get there.
Far too often young people are neglected and missed out of conversations about rough sleeping and what needs to be done to end it. These powerful stories remind us that unfortunately it happens, and now more than ever young people are sleeping in dangerous places because they have no where else to go.
For Finn, he ended up placed with Nightstop, where we work to prevent homelessness from ever happening.
This week the government launched it’s rough sleeping strategy and highlighted how, “Schemes like Nightstop […] show the vital role communities can play.”
Nightstop is rooted in the community, and helps provide a practical response to those young people who had no where to go. Our volunteer hosts provide that emergency accommodation but more than that, it is also a core part of our commitment to preventing homelessness. We try to reach young people before they start rough sleeping at all.
Click here to read more, and download the new Life On The Streets report.