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Almost 1,000 children homeless this Christmas

Hundreds of children are going to be homeless this Christmas, according to Shelter Credit: PA

Almost 1,000 children in the East Midlands are set to wake up homeless this Christmas, according to housing charity Shelter.

As a result of housing shortages, a number of families are having to live in Bed and Breakfast establishments and hostels.

The charity is warning of the knock-on effects of living in temporary accommodation. Research done with twenty families living in B & Bs and hostels found that:

  • Half of parents said their child's physical health had been negatively affected since living in the B&B or hostel
  • Every family lived in a single room, often with children and parents having to share a bed
  • Most families said their room was in a state of disrepair, and over half of families said their room was not secure
  • Most families had to eat meals on the floor or on their bed as very few had space for a table or a fit communal area to eat in
  • Three quarters had to share toilets and washing facilities with other residents
  • All families who shared a bathroom said they were in poor condition, including reports of unlockable doors, slippery or cracked tiles and dangling electrical wires


YMCA plans more projects like Henrietta Lofts

Speaking at the opening of 24 flats for young people in Birmingham who've previously lived on the streets, the CEO for the Birmingham YMCA, said:

"We have worked very hard on redeveloping the property and it provides much needed housing in Birmingham. This empty building had sat empty for years, but now it is providing much-needed affordable housing for people in the city.

"The development marks a milestone for us and we're planning on brining a further 60 properties back into use through the Government's Empty Homes Community Grants programme.

Henrietta Lofts is a great example of how government investment can help make a scheme feasible that would not have been financially viable with private sector investment alone."

– Alan Fraser, CEO for the Birmingham YMCA

Adrian Chiles opens YMCA flats to help young homeless

TV & Radio presenter Adrian Chiles opened the Henrietta Lofts Credit: ITV News Central/Bob Withers

TV & Radio presenter Adrian Chiles has opened a new block of flats in Birmingham for young people who've previously been homeless.

The 24 apartments in the city centre, called the 'Henrietta Lofts', have been developed by the YMCA.

Twenty-four new flats will be available to young people who have previously been homeless Credit: ITV News Central/Bob Withers

The apartments will offer independent living to people who are on low incomes after getting supported help off the streets.

The apartments are on Henrietta Street in Birmingham City Centre Credit: ITV News Central/Bob Withers

The building is being leased for five years by the YMCA, and the work was carried out thanks to a £200,000 grant from the Government as part of a programme to bring empty buildings back into use as residential developments.

An interior view of one of the apartments Credit: ITV News Central/Bob Withers

Leicester homeless charity gets funding

Charities working on behalf of homeless people in the Midlands have welcomed a million pounds of extra funding, to make sure no-one has to sleep rough.

The government's Homelessness Transition Fund has been set up to get homeless people off the streets, and into secure accommodation.

Click here for a link to their website or you can call 0300 500 0194 if you suspect someone may be sleeping rough

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