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Youth Homelessness in Australia

A homeless person is without a conventional home and lacks most of the economic and social supports that a home normally affords. She/he is often cut off from the support of relatives and friends, she/he has few independent resources and often has no immediate means and in some cases little prospect of self support. She/he is in danger of falling below the poverty line, at least from time to time.

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There are many causes for youth homelessness.

Some youths become homeless because they ran away from an abusive parent or caretaker. They will feel upset/depressed or angry and end up running away. Some youths become homeless because they become involved in drugs and they get kicked out and have nowhere to go. They will still have an addiction to drugs and will struggle to pay for things. Some youths become homeless because they have a mental disorder or illness that isn’t treated properly by his/her family.

These youths will often not want help and end up being alone and without help There are many myths about homeless youths and many of them are incorrect. The myth that homeless people are older men is wrong, about half those who are homelessness are between 12 and 34. (In Victoria). That all young homeless youths are male – nationally, 55 percent of homeless youths are female. Another myth is that the youths choose to be homeless. This is incorrect as they would probably prefer to be in a warm house, without having to worry about food, drugs, money or abuse.

Youth off the streets could get their message across much easier if they publicised more and showed how they are transforming/helping young people’s lives. Have fundraisers where people know they are helping the youths, have banners, try and get a day all about youths off the streets every year where it’s a big deal and business will donate, advertising around streets, on the television, pamphlets and news segment to get people’s attention and help.

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