No place like home?

I have just been reading an article in the CIS magazine “No place like home?” Shelter Scotland’s campaign for a legally enforceable right to housing and I thought I would highlight some statics that may surprise if not shock you. Such as the sentence “Today, across Scotland, 38 children will lose their home” I read this at my desk in a relatively warm office but very much aware of the wintry weather outside and I struggled to get my head round these children being made homeless – today! It did go on to say that shocking as the statistic was, it doesn’t seem to change behaviour. It needed people power, so they asked Scottish public: Are you with us? To which they received an overwhelming “yes”, and have taken that to the Government for action.
Other statistics from Shelter Scotland include:
14,043 children were assessed as homeless, or threatened with homelessness in 2018-19
80% of children in homeless households were under 11 years old
A sobering thought, we all need to be aware of what is behind these statistics – families. We need to show compassion and understanding in supporting them and play our part in through the work we do to reduce the homelessness and improve lives.

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Sobering statistics indeed! Today is the ‘Hidden Homelessness Conference’ being held in Glasgow. This Conference will be focusing on the issues affecting the health and wellbeing of those who are experiencing homelessness. It goes without saying, that homelessness and health and wellbeing are inextricably linked, often with a chicken and egg relationship. But poor health and wellbeing are not confined to the person who finds themselves homeless. As Duncan said, what is behind the statistics is a family, often a family that is experiencing significant challenges, with lived experience of the causes of homelessness, relationship breakdown being the paramount factor. Clearly someone who finds themselves homeless needs support but so may their family. Perhaps we should be putting additional resources into providing families with the skills to manage conflict, so preventing homelessness by dealing with issues much further upstream!

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