Campaign to give young homeless people in South East a home in winter

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A campaign has been launched to try and combat homelessness.

As part of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ (RCIS) 150th anniversary in 2018, it has pledged to raise £2.25 million by December this year for LandAid in an effort to fund the creation of at least 150 bed spaces for young people at risk of homelessness.

This time last year, more than 6,000 people in the South East of England spent the colder months homeless, according to a report called A Place to Call Home, published by Sage Foundation and LKMco.

In an effort to reduce the number of young people experiencing homelessness during winter, and the Christmas season, the RICS has joined forces with property industry charity, LandAid to launch a campaign to deliver more bed spaces for homeless people in the region.

The campaign is known as Pledge150.

The Duke of Cambridge attended the launch of the campaign in November 2017, along with senior figures from the UK’s leading property and construction firms, where he spoke about his concern for those with nowhere to call home, and how he would like to see all those working in the property industry joining with LandAid to end youth homelessness.

Matthew Howell, RICS managing director, UK & Ireland said: “The winter months are often the most difficult for young people who are homeless, and sadly as temperatures plummet, those who are forced to sleep rough are at an even greater risk of harm, and even death.

“We were delighted that the Duke of Cambridge could attend our kick-start fundraiser for more warm, secure homes for young vulnerable people. We raised £127,000 towards the £2.25m target on the day, through a number of activities including a charity cook-off, auction and ‘Pledge a Bed’ initiative. This is a great start towards making a real positive change to young vulnerable people’s lives.”

Paul Morrish, CEO of LandAid, said: “There are thousands of young people living in overcrowded accommodation or sofa surfing, but no one counts them, or keeps records of how many people are suffering in such situations. Homelessness is a much bigger issue than rough sleeping, especially for young people.

“We aim to get as many young people without a safe place to call home, in to secure, affordable accommodation. So, we are delighted to be teaming up with RICS in what is our biggest ever fundraising campaign to end youth homelessness.”

For more information on the RICS Pledge150 campaign www.rics.org/150 or follow the initiative on Twitter using the hashtag #Pledge150.