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Homelessness is having nowhere to live. It’s an issue that affects many young people. Learn more about it, what impact it can have and who can help.


Homelessness isn’t just sleeping rough

Being homeless means not having a stable or safe place to live.

Homelessness can include:

  • Couch surfing

  • Sleeping outside

  • Living or sleeping in a car

  • Staying in a shelter, hostel or refuge

  • Living in an abandoned house or building

  • Staying in overcrowded housing

  • Living in temporary accommodation

Being homeless means not having stability, a sense of security, privacy, safety or the ability to control your living space.

Homelessness can affect anyone

There are a number of reasons someone may become homeless. Some causes include:




Family breakdown

Financial issues

Illness or disability

Mental health issues

Addiction or substance abuse

The impact of being homeless

When a person becomes homeless, even briefly, the impacts can be complex and long-lasting.

It can be harder for people to:

  • Find a job

  • Stay healthy

  • Maintain relationships


It can also have an effect on:

  • Safety

  • Health care

  • Emotional wellbeing

  • Mental health

  • Opportunities

  • Drug and alcohol use

  • Risk taking

  • Ability to cope with everyday stresses

Who can help?

If you’re needing support with homelessness after business hours, these 24hr services can help:

Local hospital
Kids Helpline - 1800 55 1800
Lifeline - 13 11 14

Nearly half of all homeless people are under the age of 25.

You’re not alone, there is support available.

Don’t give up – we can help

Kids Helpline is FREE to call and available 24/7

If you’re experiencing or facing homelessness, there are many services and resources available to help.

Each state has specialised homeless helplines and services that can help with accommodation and basic needs like food and clothing.

Give us a call, start a WebChat or send us an email today and we’ll support you to get into contact with them.

This content was last reviewed 14/02/2018

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