No care-experienced child or young person should ever be made homeless. In Wales, we have been working with partners across the sector to make sure they never are.
End Youth Homelessness Cymru (EYHC) is a national coalition led by Llamau with the aim of ending youth homelessness in the next ten years. Sharon Lovell, Chief Executive of NYAS Cymru chairs the sub-group to end youth homelessness for care-experienced children and young people.
Did you know?
• 33% of care-experienced young people become homeless in the first two years after leaving care and 25% of all single homeless people have been in care at some point in their lives.
• 48% of people who are homeless in Wales first became homeless before they were 21.
• 73% of people who are homeless living in Wales have been homeless more than once.
Care-experienced young people are more likely than their peers to find themselves homeless or living in vulnerable housing, and the scale of the problem is not reflected in official figures alone. Many young people are hidden homeless, sofa surfing, sleeping out of sight in squats and staying in abusive relationships with no alternative to housing.
Supporting Llamau’s campaign
NYAS Cymru is supporting the priority of the EYHC steering group to understand and reduce the links between the care system and youth homelessness.
We have created an ambitious action plan with key recommendations for change.
The EYHC’s latest report, ‘Don’t let me fall through the cracks: Homelessness amongst Care-Experienced Young People in Wales’, makes thirteen key recommendations to ensure that care- young people are given effective early-intervention support and reducing youth homelessness. The research report has been coproduced by young researchers.
Alongside these recommendations, the report features ten ‘golden rules’, principles advocated by care-experienced children and young people themselves which must be followed by corporate parents when placing a child or young person in temporary accommodation.
For a broader comparison of policy and practice that affects care-experienced young people across England and Wales, NYAS’ first ‘Across the Border’ briefing looks at how UK and Welsh Government can learn from each other and ensure that there is effective homelessness prevention support for care-experienced young people accessible in both nations.
Every child and young person deserves a safe and loving home. The Corporate Parenting of young people in care is the responsibility of all of us. It is unacceptable that any child in care ends up homeless, it is time to act.