Our focus is on young people
The public's general perception of 'homeless' is formed by all sorts of influences - but rarely reflects on young adults unable to remain in the family home. The public doesn't see 16-21s who chose sofa surfing, night buses or living high risk lives for a roof over their head.
CAYSH works specifically for single young people (generally aged 16-21) because they have different needs from rough sleepers. Young people have been telling us for 30+ years that they don't feel safe in adult homelessness services like hostels. Those facing sleeping rough generally spend nights on night buses or take up risky behaviour rather than use hostels or night shelters.
We know that young people can quickly overcome the challenges that cause and arise from homelessness and our mission is to make sure homelessness becomes a single moment in their history not a regular event. We achieve this by listening to what young people tell us works and making sure our services address their needs and ambitions.
These experiences of just a few young people we worked with are fairly typical of all our work with hundreds of young people each year.
T, aged 17, approached CAYSH in May 2008 for housing advice having been asked to leave home by his mother.
His relationship with his mother had deteriorated because he had started to get involved in petty crime, and had begun hanging around with young people who were involved in “minor gang activity”.
B is a man on a mission. He’s determined to use his experience of a challenging and sometimes chaotic childhood to help others facing the same.
In some ways his story is fairly normal – his parents separated at an early age, his relationship with the parent he was living with deteriorated badly when their new partner moved in, he drifted from sofa to sofa and ended up homeless. Read more...
I left home first when I was 16. My mum and I fought constantly. I fought with my brother too. My mum and I were making each others lives hell and eventually she threw me out as much for my own good as for her own sanity.
R tells her own story.
We have a dedicated service user involvement team whose job is to involve you in every aspect of CAYSH. You can participate in a whole range of activities which CAYSH provides, which will not only help you feel part of CAYSH, but moreover will help you develop skills useful for future employment and independence.
This could include speaking up about your concerns in tenant panel meetings, participating in film and design workshops, cookery schools or football matches, working with the CAYSH team in delivering conferences – for example the 3rd National Youth Homelessness Conference which young people co-organised and delivered.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org