Prince William warns of homeless crisis as thousands of youths face life on the street


The second in line to the throne, who has followed in his mother Princess Diana’s footsteps by working as patron of the charity Centrepoint, cited research that showed  only 12 per cent of the 136,000 young people seeking support for homelessness are being housed amid Government funding cuts.

In a speech at the first Centrepoint awards evening in London, the Duke of Cambridge said: “This is of particular concern ahead of the Christmas period, where young people can resort to desperate measures to avoid sleeping on the streets.

“Centrepoint expects that 15,000 young will be without a home over Christmas, often having to sleep rough.”

William, who in December 2009 slept out on the streets of London in temperatures as low as minus 4C to gain a better understanding of the plight of young homeless people, highlighted the long-term effects of lacking a safe place to sleep.

“The impact of homelessness is not temporary. All too often, a person’s long-term mental and physical health, education and sense of self-worth can also be at risk,” he said.

Appealing for continuing funding from donors and praising the way young award winners had turned their lives around, William, 33, cited research from  Centrepoints’s Youth Homeless Databank, which speople – via family mediation, support to find a private rented flat, or help with debt – but are recognising fewer of them as legally entitled to housing, only 12 per cent compared to 20 per cent in 2012.

Gaia Marcus, manager of the databank, said: “Councils are providing services to prevent and relieve homelessness beyond what they are legally obliged to do, but insufficient funding from central government is leaving local authorities with their hands tied and putting the futures of young people at risk.”

William steered clear of directly blaming the Government for the lack of money available.

Extracted from the Daily Mail!