LGBTQ+ History Month

Youth homelessness within the LGBTQ+ community is an urgent and rising issue.

New research by Centrepoint states that 122,000 young people approached their local authority for help because they were at risk of losing their home and had nowhere else to turn.

This marks an increase of 40% over the last 5 years, with the number only being further exacerbated by the pandemic.

This figure doesn’t include thousands more who are sofa surfing or living in unstable accommodation – those known as the hidden homeless.

How LGBTQ+ young people are affected by homelessness

Heartbreakingly, LGBTQ+ young people are disproportionally affected by homelessness.

24% of young people who found themselves homeless last year identified as LGBTQ+.

These individuals have sadly often experienced abuse in their family home, which can lead to them becoming isolated from the communities they grew up in. Such rejection can have a huge negative effect on these young people, resulting in intense loneliness and long-term mental health issues.

Half of LGBTQ+ young people last year said they feared that expressing their LGBTQ+ identity to family members would lead to them losing their home, and 59% of LGBTQ+ young people have faced some form of discrimination or harassment whilst accessing housing services.

David Mann, Partner at TFT and Co-Founder of Freehold confirms, “sadly I have many friends who are estranged from their family due to their sexuality and have had a very tough time finding their way through life with many experiencing homelessness, and even having to becoming sex workers just to survive.

Several have subsequently committed suicide. Networks can be such a power for good, whether by creating a safe and supportive place for likeminded people to meet, being a friendly shoulder, educating and helping to transform the immediate world around us.

Our collective memberships can become a huge force for change and so we are proud members of Networks Against Homelessness.”

Scott Parsons, LandAid Trustee and newly appointed Co-Chair of Freehold agrees:

“Freehold is proud to support LandAid’s Networks Against Homelessness initiative. We recognise the stark inequalities in the youth homelessness landscape and use the power of our network to raise awareness and vital funds to support young LGBTQ+ people without anywhere to call home.

The money we raise for LandAid goes directly towards vital charity projects such as akt, who support young people into safe homes and employment, education or training, in order to provide these vulnerable young people with the support they need to live independently and reach their full potential.”

How our funding helps the LGBTQ+ community

LandAid has been able to provide funds to charities like akt, which support young people identifying as LGTBQ+, who are facing or experiencing homelessness, or living in a hostile environment.

Throughout the pandemic, as with many other youth homelessness charities, akt saw a dramatic increase in demand. But with a grant from LandAid’s Covid-19 Emergency Fund, akt was able to provide urgent support to young people through accommodation, food parcels and vouchers.

Whilst also helping others apply for jobs and have a means to still feel part of the LGBTQ+ community. You can read more about one young person who’s life we have help to transform – this is Harry’s story.

The accommodation we fund, not only gives young people a roof over their head, but supports them to develop vital life skills, and helps them to take care of their mental health and to find a stable job – LandAid provides these young people with the building blocks they need for a bright future.