Hidden homelessness campaign launches

The Welsh government and Shelter Cymru have launched the campaign across social media  to target young people who are sleeping on friends’ sofas and may be unaware they are homeless.

Joe Lepper | 7th Jan 20

Young people are being targeted as part of a joint charity and government campaign in Wales to warn of ‘hidden homelessness’.

The campaign is looking to target young people who are sleeping on a friend’s sofa, living in a temporary hostel or an overcrowded house and not even realise they are homeless.

Shelter Cymru and the Welsh Government are spearheading the campaign across social media and traditional media with the slogan “Homelessness Doesn’t Always Live On the Streets’.

This includes coverage across Shelter Cymru’s Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Young people in ‘hidden homelessness’ situations are being urged to seek help via Shlter Cymru’s instant messaging service, helpline and advisers.

“We know the earlier and more often someone experiences homelessness, the more likely they are to develop complex issues that might mean they become homeless repeatedly throughout their adult life,” said Shelter Cymru Director Jon Puzey.

“That’s why it’s so important that we make it a priority to prevent youth homelessness.

“It’s fantastic that the Welsh government is taking this so seriously and helping us to reach more young people. With this joint campaign we are making sure that young people know that Shelter Cymru is here to help them.”

Seek advice

Welsh government Housing Minister Julie James added: “Many people think homelessness is only about rough sleeping – it is not. Many young people experiencing, or at risk of homelessness don’t recognise themselves as homeless.

“If you don’t have a place to call home it is likely that you are experiencing ‘hidden homelessness’.

We know young people often don’t know where to seek advice and support – so that’s why we’re launching this new campaign.”

Also backing the campaign on social media is Cymorth Cymru, the umbrella body for homelessness support services.