More than 1 in 5 homeless people are aged 16-24
22% of people became homeless as relatives or friends could no longer provide accommodation
YMCA provides housing for over 18,000 young people every year
£22 could pay for a warm bed for the night for a homeless young person with nowhere else to go
£50 could pay for one hour’s career mentoring for a young person to help then kick-start a new career
£103 could help ensure a staff member is available around the clock for 24 hours, providing vital support and assistance to a young person
Hear Drew’s story in his own words.
This is quite tough for me to write. But if telling you my story helps other young people, then the struggle will have been worth it.
YMCA was there for me when I was desperate and I would be so grateful if you could help them be there for others like me. Your donations make a real difference.
How it all started.
The worst of my problems started just a few months before I was due to leave school.
I lived with my Mum, but she had got heavily into drugs. This just got worse and worse and it ended up with her being wanted by the police. I was only 16 when she eventually ran away, leaving me completely alone in the house. I didn’t even have electricity or gas to heat the place or cook anything. They’d both been cut off.
I was most scared when it was dark. The front door didn’t lock, so I had to tape it shut. It was hard to sleep because I kept thinking someone was breaking in. I was in the middle of my GCSE exams and I really needed my sleep. I was exhausted, hungry and felt completely hopeless.
This went on for months until eventually I was evicted. I had nowhere to go. I remember standing on my front step, not knowing what to do, with everything I owned in two plastic bags.
Thankfully, things took a good turn.
Eventually social services contacted YMCA and within just a few hours they offered me a place to stay.
YMCA helped me believe in myself again and I remember thinking I would take every opportunity I got and see where it led.
Because of YMCA, I was able to volunteer at my local football club’s Community Trust, where I helped run their boxercise sessions. That led me to becoming involved in the Working Assets Programme, which YMCA runs in partnership with a big local car manufacturer.
Working in the HR Department gave me valuable experience, which helped me get accepted onto an apprenticeship at a local training course specialist in January 2018. As well as successfully completing the Work Programme, this gave me a massive sense of achievement.
I couldn’t believe how much YMCA had helped turn my life around. Since then I feel like I’ve gone on from strength to strength
It would be brilliant if you could donate today and provide this lifeline to another young person going through what I went through.