Facing homelessness - finding the support you need


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Across the globe, people are facing uncertain economic times. The cost of living crisis, rising energy prices, rising rents and a chronic shortage of social housing, have all made it clearer than ever that homelessness doesn’t discriminate. 

Whilst it’s true that some people are inevitably more at risk of homelessness and poverty than others (for example, those who are residing in unsuitable and unstable housing or working in low-paid jobs), there’s no doubt about the fact that homelessness is on the rise across a number of different demographics. 

But what would you do if it happened to you? Would you know where to go and who to turn to for the support you needed? 

Below, we’ve outlined just a few of the different scenarios that people might be dealing with, and where to go for help if homelessness is a threat that looms.  


Receiving an eviction notice can be incredibly frightening and unsettling. If you find yourself in this situation, it’s important that you have all the information you need in order to understand why the eviction is happening, whether it’s legal, and whether or not there’s anything you can do about it. 

There are two different types of evictions: 

  • Section 8 - which involves your landlord relying on the fact that you’ve breached your tenancy in some way. Failing to pay your rent is a good example here. 
  • Section 21 - also known as the ‘no-fault’ eviction, this type of eviction is very common. You don’t have to have breached your tenancy in any way, and your landlord isn’t required to give you a reason. You might receive this if your tenancy has come to an end. 
  • You can learn more about each of the above here

If you suspect that you’re being evicted illegally, it’s a good idea to seek advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau. If the eviction is lawful, you’ll need to make a homeless application with your local council - click here to get started if you live in Bradford, or here if you reside in Leeds. 

Pregnant and at risk of homelessness

As we come to the end of Women’s History Month, motherhood and homelessness is a topic we’ve been discussing. Homelessness  brings with it a number of different challenges, and if you’re pregnant, you might be feeling anxious and worried. 

Make sure that you get in touch with your local council, as they’ll be able to establish whether you’re eligible for housing and considered a priority, which you’re likely to be if you’re pregnant or you have children under the age of 16 (19 if still in full time education). Shelter has some very useful information here

Non UK citizens 

Whether you’ve been residing in the UK for some time, or you’ve recently arrived here from another country, you’ll need some tailored advice and information to ensure that you’re getting the right housing support.

Speak to your local council as well as the Citizens Advice Bureau, as they’ll be able to advise on both your immigration status and whether you’re a priority need. Here in Leeds, there’s a wonderful organisation called PAFRAS, a charity providing advice and support to asylum seekers who are facing homelessness. You can contact them here

Under 18 - youth homelessness 

If you’re reading this, and you’re under the age of 18 with nowhere to stay, please know that you’re not alone. It might be that you’ve had a disagreement with your family or carers, and have been asked to leave. It might also be that you’re staying with friends or sofa surfing from place to place. Whatever your circumstances, rest assured that there are people who can help. 

If you can, speak to an adult that you trust. This might be a family friend or even a teacher. They could help you to contact children’s services, as the local authority must ensure that you have somewhere to stay. 

If you need to speak to someone urgently, your local council will have an emergency number that you can call out of hours - you’ll find all of the details you need here

You can also contact the Centrepoint Helpline, or Childline for further advice and support. 

If you find yourself at risk of homelessness, whatever the circumstances, it’s important to seek help and support sooner rather than later. Contact your local council for guidance around your next steps, and if you need any support at all during the process, the team here at Simon on the Streets are happy to chat through any questions that you might have. 

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