Over the year or so my husband and I have needed a new bed.
Springs in our backs and aches and pains all over from the old mattress.
A month or so ago this situation became desperate when our bed broke and only one of us could sleep on it at a time.
Thankfully last week we finally purchased a new bed and I cannot express how lovely it has been to sleep comfortably, waking without aching joints.
This has led me to really think about those that have no comfortable bed to sleep on.
Those who have no bed at all.
As winter strikes and the weather reports show freezing temperatures I cannot envisage how truly awful it must be to be sleeping outside in these conditions.
While we are all getting excited about the falling snow imagine the cold white stuff being your pillow throughout the night.
With charities seeing the amount of people sleeping rough in the UK rising each year it is a situation that needs addressing.
As I watch my daughters sleep in the warmth of their beds and the safety of their bedrooms, I cannot imagine that children their ages are sleeping out rough, have no where to call home.
But latest findings from http://www.homeless.org.uk show that this is the case.
- 52% of those seeking help with homelessness are under 25.
- Councils are preventing homelessness amongst homeless young people in just 1 in 5 cases.
- More than half of young people become homeless because of a relationship breakdown, mainly with their parents.
- Homeless young people face a range of complex problems – more than 6 in 10 are not in education, employment or training for example.
- Half of agencies believe the problems faced by young people have got worse since last year.
- Charities report that homelessness caused by financial problems due to benefit reductions has increased six-fold. 90% believe sanctions have affected young people’s ability to access accommodation.
- 74% of homelessness organisations were unable to support a young person due to limited capacity.
I confess these figures actually left me in tears.
I am a foster carer and I am aware of the breakdown of relationships within families etc but was not aware of the scope of this issue.
So much more needs to be done, homelessness is on the increase and more support, services and advice need to be in play.
This is why I encourage you all to visit http://www.eyh.org.uk and sign the petition and add your support to the coalition of charities and businesses working to end youth homelessness.
No young person ever asks for the circumstances that lead them to becoming homeless.