Why are Homelessness Charities Important?
Globally, the spectre of homelessness looms large, affecting over 100 million people who lack a stable abode. This alarming figure encompasses 11 million children compelled to endure nights on the streets. These grim realities underscore the crucial endeavours of charities committed to addressing the multifaceted challenges of homelessness and aiding individuals and families on their quest for stability.
Beyond the immediate refuge provided by crisis shelters, these organizations engage in comprehensive efforts, ranging from long-term programs fostering social and economic independence to equipping individuals with vital skills, healthcare, and mental health support. This holistic approach paves the way for enduring transformation. In this journey towards positive change, these charities extend essential lifelines to children facing homelessness, ensuring not only shelter but also facilitating access to education, nutrition, and a secure environment conducive to their overall well-being.
Below is a map showing homeless populations per 10,000 inhabitants (Source: Wikipedia)
Businesses Supporting Homelessness Charities
In 2023, the UK retailer B&Q ran their Raise the Roof campaign in support of Shelter raising over £250,000 for charity. By going to their local B&Q, shoppers could take part in some great activities including base sales, party games, and other challenges. It is a great way to support some great causes while connecting with customers in your store.
Since 2017, B&Q have helped to raise over £4,000,000 for shelter and their partner charities.
Homelessness Awareness Days
For businesses looking to support a homelessness charity, there is never a better time than now. However, there are some specific awareness events dedicated to supporting homelessness including; World Homeless Day.
Here are a few of the best Homelessness charities to support:
National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH)
Founded back in 1982, NCH stands as a prominent advocate in the United States, tirelessly championing the rights of individuals facing homelessness. Their commitment extends to instigating systemic change, rallying grassroots support, and administering diverse programs that provide essential services, ranging from legal aid to housing navigation and employment assistance.
Impact: NCH's "Right to Housing" campaign played an important role in securing landmark legislation, ensuring the right to housing for homeless individuals in the city of New York.
This community organization based in the United Kingdom is dedicated to empowering individuals overcoming homelessness. They achieve this through meaningful work opportunities within a network of thrift stores and social enterprises. Emmaus focuses on skill development, supportive living, and financial independence training to break the cycle of homelessness and nurture self-reliance.
Impact: Emmaus communities support over 750 individuals, aiding them in securing permanent housing and rebuilding their lives.
Across England, Scotland, and Wales, Crisis actively addresses homelessness through a combination of direct support services and advocacy for systemic change. Their comprehensive approach encompasses emergency shelters, skills training, mental health support, and affordable housing pathways.
Impact: In 2021, Crisis supported over 50,000 individuals through diverse programs, facilitating access to safe accommodation, and guiding them toward lasting stability.
Save the Family
Save the Family, with a focus on preventing family homelessness in the United States, offers vital housing assistance, financial counselling, and parenting support to at-risk families. Their holistic approach strengthens family bonds, promotes economic stability, and prevents children from entering the foster care system.
Impact: Save the Family has supported over 350,000 families to avoid homelessness
DePaul USA is a homelessness charity working out of 9 major cities in the US. They support many aspects including emergency shelters, transitional housing, healthcare, and other individual needs.
Impact: Their Dax Program in Atlanta has been very helpful in supporting hundreds of veterans to secure permanent housing as well as employment opportunities.
Covenant House International
Operating across 31 countries, Covenant House International provides safe havens and critical support to runaway and homeless youth. Their comprehensive approach includes emergency shelters, educational programs, mental health services, and job training, empowering young people to rebuild their lives.
Impact: In 2022, Covenant House served over 96,000 homeless youth worldwide, offering essential care and resources to navigate challenging circumstances.
Making a difference in Chicago, Streetwise empowers homeless individuals through employment opportunities within its social enterprises. Their network of recycling centres and thrift stores not only provides dignified work but also offers job training and a supportive community, fostering financial independence and a pathway out of homelessness.
Impact: Streetwise has been instrumental, in providing over 30,000 program participants with paid work experience.
As a leading homelessness charity in the UK, Shelter actively campaigns for policy changes to prevent homelessness and provides support to those already experiencing it. Their comprehensive services include legal advice, debt counseling, emergency shelters, and access to affordable housing options.
Impact: Shelter's successful "Every Child Deserves a Home" campaign has had a positive influence on the UK government's homelessness policies.
St Mungo's is based in the UK and was founded in 1969. They have a unique 'Housing First' approach that focuses on providing permanent housing without other conditions. Then, they focus on supporting people to get back on their feet.
Impact: They are currently supporting over 8,000 people in the UK to get back on their feet.
Dogs on the Streets (DOTS)
DOTS operate a mobile veterinary surgery dedicated to supporting vulnerable dogs living on the streets with their homeless companions. They are based in the UK and focus on several aspects including, food, medical support, bedding and accessories, grooming, training, and more.
Impact: To date, they have supported over 2,000 dogs and their owners.
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