Homelessness and sleeping rough is increasing and is a concern for all areas of the country. Despite its affluence, St Albans is no different. Increasing accommodation costs, job losses, government cut-backs and relationship breakdowns are some of the contributing factors to this rise in homelessness.
In purely financial terms, it’s estimated that each homeless person costs £26,000 a year to the public purse. Some may believe that’s a waste of money but more importantly, it’s a waste of a life that could be so much more worthwhile.
Homelessness is far more than not having a roof over your head. A home provides you with physical and emotional security, and often close human contact. When a home is lost, these things are taken away and this makes it a crisis that most people find difficult to manage. People can become homeless for lots of different reasons, often in circumstances beyond their control. Relationship breakdown, redundancy, addictions and coming out of prison can all lead to people needing help from the Open Door facility.
It can also be very difficult for a homeless person to get any kind of job. There is often no way to contact them and once someone finds out the applicant is homeless they may not hire them simply because they are homeless. Open Door plays a vital part in helping people who are in crisis and in supporting people who have become homeless to rebuild their self-esteem and re-establish their lives in our community.