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UK WINTER APPEAL

Help Spread The Warmth

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This year, between the months of April – June, 91 families became homeless in the UK each day as lockdown restrictions were lifted!

Homelessness is not just sleeping on the streets, but it also includes people not having a permanent safe place to call home. This could mean living in unsuitable temporary accommodation in hostels or sofa-surfing.

Sadly, the number of homeless people in the UK is increasing at a rate of over 1,000 each month, with the overall number reaching almost 320,000, according to last year’s report released by the government. Moreover, youth homelessness in the United Kingdom has soared by almost two-fifths in the last five years. In 2019-20, 121,000 young people aged 16 to 25 presented to their local authority because they were homeless or likely to become homeless. 

Between April and June, 20,850 families approached their local council and were found to be homeless or at risk of homelessness – despite the eviction ban being in place for most of the period. 

Based on the data from the government, black minorities are increasingly affected by homelessness, with one in every 23 black households being homeless or at risk of becoming homeless, compared to one in every 83 households of all other ethnicities combined.

One of the most prevalent causes of homelessness is eviction from a privately rented house. People struggle to keep a roof over their heads due to unemployment, harsh evictions, and sky-high rents, but homelessness goes beyond housing.

For many youth, the number one cause of homelessness is family breakdown, financial crisis and domestic violence. Homeless young people between the ages of 16 and 25 are at a higher risk of mental health problems than young adults who have stable homes. More than a third suffer from despair or anxiety, while the other third struggle with substance abuse. We believe, homelessness is a condition that no one should have to deal with since it is not only exhausting and stressful, but it can also have major long-term repercussions on a person’s health and wellbeing.

According to a survey, rates of poor mental health among the general youth population are alarmingly high, with between 10% and 20% of young people developing mental health problems as a result of homelessness.

Furthermore, drug demands were stated by 26.6 percent of homeless young people, whereas only 11.4 percent of non-homeless youth reported substance use problems.

Food insecurity owing to financial difficulties is another big health risk for homeless people. According to the Food Standards Agency, food insecurity is significantly more prevalent in some demographic groups, particularly among young people. With rising food prices due to inflation and Brexit, low-income young people are finding it difficult to budget for food and maintain a healthy diet. Thus, such people prioritise rent payments and other housing bills over food because they are afraid of losing their housing; instead, they would choose to go hungry.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Homelessness is a serious problem at this time of year. Rough sleeping is difficult at any time of year, but it is extremely challenging in the chilly and dark nights of winter. This winter, we aim to help as many homeless people as we can, so please donate what you can to make this winter bearable for them. 

Providing relief to the homeless requires much more than just warm clothes and nutritious meals but that’s where we can start at least. Sustainable solutions are needed to tackle this problem in the long run and create an impact. 

Whilst temporary housing is not a permanent solution, it is the first step towards getting the homeless off drugs, and getting them cleaned up and sober. Skill learning and job training is the next step and it can improve their chances of employability significantly. 

At ATI, we aim to assist the homeless living on the streets by providing them with warm food, hot beverages, clothing, blankets, and shelters that could literally save their lives in extreme weather. This, however, would not be possible without your assistance and support. With a donation of £50, you can help contribute towards our efforts to help the homeless feel loved and cared for.

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