News News and blogs Youth Homeless Helpline Launches We are thrilled to announce the launch of the Youth Homeless Helpline - the first out-of-hours freephone helpline for homeless young people in Wales. The Youth Homeless Helpline is launching at Cardiff Arms Park, following a fundraising appeal which has been supported by members of the public, Nationwide Building Society and Hollywood actor and End Youth Homelessness Cymru Ambassador, Michael Sheen. In July 2016, young people supported by a range of youth homelessness charities in Wales under End Youth Homelessness Cymru launched a petition to the UK Government which called for a dedicated, out-of-hours helpline for homeless young people in Wales. These young people felt driven to campaign for a helpline because so many of them had not known where to turn for help when they first became homeless. The petition received over 95,000 signatures, but did not lead to the creation of a helpline. In November 2017, we launched a public crowdfunding appeal to raise the money needed to launch and run the helpline for a year. We were absolutely blown away by the support for the appeal, which received over 300 donations from members of the public. The appeal was also supported by Michael Sheen and Nationwide Building Society and has now raised a total of £92,320, allowing the helpline to be run for one year. We are absolutely thrilled to announce that, from 26th February 2019, the Youth Homeless Helpline can be called free of charge on 0800 328 0292 Monday to Thursday 5pm to 9am and Friday 5pm to Monday 9am. Calls to the Youth Homeless Helpline will be answered by highly trained volunteers who will provide support and advice for homeless young people as soon as they need it. The helpline launch comes at a time when homelessness is ever increasing. The latest Welsh Government statistics for 2017-18 show that 7,584 16-24 year olds approached their local authority for help with homelessness – an increase of 23% since 2015. In addition, many more young people’s homelessness is hidden – sofa surfing, sleeping on friend’s floors – and haven’t approached their local authority for help. We'd like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has donated and helped to make the Youth Homeless Helpline a reality. Your support could be the difference between a safe place to stay or a night on the streets for a young person at risk. How you can help Donate The time immediately after a young person becomes homeless is critical. Without access to support and advice, many have no choice but to make an impulsive and potentially dangerous decision about where to sleep that night. The more time that passes, as the generosity of friends and family runs out, the more dangerous these decisions are likely to become. A donation of £13.67 is enough to run the helpline for one hour.Your donation will help ensure that all young people at risk of homelessness have somewhere they can turn to for help as soon as they need it, whenever they need it. Volunteer The Youth Homeless Helpline relies on volunteers to ensure we can be there for young people when they need it most. If you are driven to end youth homelessness in Wales and can donate your time and skills, we'd love to hear from you. In return, you will receive ongoing training and support from Llamau to ensure that you are able to provide relevant and accurate information and advice to help at-risk young people keep themselves safe.