Advanced search

What can we do to help homeless starving people in the UK?

(94 Posts)
Tweezerz Sat 13-May-17 14:35:58

Not an AIBU posting for traffic.

I live in London. Every single day I am approached by people who cannot afford to feed themselves or have nowhere to live who are forced to ask strangers for spare change for food. I know this has always happened but I'm noticing it more and more. Just now a young guy approached me saying he was autistic and was asking for money so he could eat today. He seemed so desperate. It's heartbreaking I gave him the few pounds I had in change but that is one meal. I don't know what to do to try and help on a larger scale. I donate to food banks etc but what's the solution to help these people who don't have anywhere to live or any money to live on? It is making me feel sick thinking about all of these people living hand to mouth.

After speaking to this guy briefly I rushed off as I'm late to meet a friend and I feel so guilty for not having a conversation with him and trying harder to help.

IllBeAtTheSpa Sat 13-May-17 14:37:59

The best advice I could give is donate and volunteer with a registered charity eg shelter.
It's a sad situation in many of our towns and cities. Manchesters new mayor has pledged to donate 10% of his salary to start a new homelessness project which is amazing

19lottie82 Sat 13-May-17 14:41:29

I don't think its genuinely a good idea to give to people like this.

I'm not denying that a lot of them are genuine but tbh most of the money prob goes on drunks / drink rather than food , and there are also a lot of "professional beggars" out there.

If you want to help try and find some local homeless charities who are looking for donations.

Awwlookatmybabyspider Sat 13-May-17 14:49:05

Stop being brainwashed by the media about The Tories being the best party for the UK. And vote them out. Working class people can't be voting Tories which a lot of them do, and Then expect people to put their hsnds in their pockets for food banks that they might need. I'm sorry if I upset anyone and It's a horrible statement to make, but. Its a true one. Everyone has to help themselves by getting these cretins out, and Getting over this downer everyone seems to have on Jeremy Corbyn. A man who is fighting against austerity. A man who has promised to end the wicked Bedroom Tax.
In short we have the remedy in our own hands. Let's hope everyone uses on 8June.

scottishdiem Sat 13-May-17 15:21:04

1. Find out what the local homeless homeless (not the risk of homeless or in shit housing homeless) charities are doing and support them.

2. Find out what local mental health and addiction charities that have homeless support services are doing and support them.

3. Find out what local church and other community organisations are doing to offer accommodation support and help them.

4. FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HUMANE, DO NOT VOTE TORY IN AT LOCAL OR NATIONAL LEVELS. Homelessness can be addressed. Tory voters just think they are feckless idiots who, if only the just jolly well pulled their socks up, the homeless would be gone. These voters no nothing of the catch 22 situations where bad mental health results in bad decisions resulting in homelessness resulting in worse mental health resulting in even more bad decisions resulting in... etc.

Homelessness can be resolved (for the most part) through local and national policy decisions. A person is homeless on the street basically because it is the policy of Tories to have them there.

Eggsellent Sat 13-May-17 15:33:07

I see people have already beaten me to it but I'll say it again anyway - don't vote tory! Homelessness has risen by 700% since the condems took power in 2010 and it is only going to get worse unless the electorate come to their senses before June 8th.

VerySadInside Sat 13-May-17 15:36:06

They aren't buying food with your money.

If you want to give something vouchers are easy, a pal I have always carries £5 supermarket vouchers around to give out.

BillSykesDog Sat 13-May-17 15:36:10

Give to a shelter. Many of these people are professional beggars with secure housing.

MojoMoon Sat 13-May-17 15:41:43

I am involved in a London homelessness charity.

There are plenty of free places to get food in central London. What there is a massive shortage of is homes and mental health and drug addiction support.

We recommend not giving money to people who request it on the street.

If you are very concerned about someone, you can text or log on to the street link website and report them. Social workers will then attempt to track them down. Most of the street homeless in London are known to social workers such as streetlink. But there are very limited options as to where they can go especially if they have significant drug or mental health problems and really require supported accommodation. Some/many are not really able to cope alone in a bedsit or room in an HMO so they act up, get evicted and the cycle starts again.

So donate money to homeless charities and mental health support services and volunteer your time at a local night shelter (many boroughs have one now)

user1491148352 Sat 13-May-17 15:44:25

What MojoMoon said

DriveInSaturday Sat 13-May-17 15:51:52

VerySad surely I could spend £5 of Tesco vouchers on £5 worth of alcohol if I chose to.

That's quite apart from the issue of Lady Bountiful deciding what others should be allowed to buy.

DoloresTheRunawayTrain Sat 13-May-17 15:56:23

In the shirt term volunteer and donate to homeless and mental health charities.
In the linger term don't vote for a party that thing being ill, poor or homeless is something to be punished.

user1487175389 Sat 13-May-17 15:57:03

Redistribution of wealth.

DoloresTheRunawayTrain Sat 13-May-17 15:57:13

Short and longer. Stupid autopredict

HelenaDove Sat 13-May-17 16:03:08

YY Dolores Back in Feb i was talking to a homeless man who said he recognised me. Turned out we went to school together. And hes not a drunk. Neither was the other guy who was with him. And yes i did give them a small amount.

Found out about this charity recently.

thesunpeeksthrough Sat 13-May-17 16:03:59

What Bill said.

VerySadInside Sun 14-May-17 08:45:11

Yes you could but you would find it harder to buy drugs. Said friend has done work involving sex trafficking and says hard drugs almost always involve sex trafficked children/women somewhere along the way.

cheminotte Sun 14-May-17 08:50:59

I'm surprised no has said buy the Big Issue yet. And I agree, don't vote Tory and do find out who has the most chance of beating them in your constituency.

BMW6 Sun 14-May-17 09:08:22

Donate to Shelter or any local charity that helps the homeless but don't give money direct to an individual.

runloganrun101 Sun 14-May-17 09:10:10

The best thing you can do is not give money to beggers and instead donate directly (with gift aid) to charities and organisations that support the homeless even if it's just buying a Big Issue.

PerkingFaintly Sun 14-May-17 09:12:22

This is a good article about the current rise in homelessness.

topcat2014 Sun 14-May-17 09:13:48

In my town, almost all (if not all) street homeless are known to a charity of which I am trustee.

I would also advocate donating to your local housing advice charity, who will have trained staff dealing and advocating on behalf of these people.

You could also see if you can volunteer for them - although that is not for everyone.

BitchQueen90 Sun 14-May-17 09:18:28

I work with homeless. Usually their issues are a lot more complex than just getting them somewhere to live. Most suffer with either addictions or mental health problems which aren't easy to access help for.

If you can afford to, donating money to your local homeless charity is always appreciated. Or if you have spare time, volunteer for a few hours a week. If you see someone who is sleeping rough, get in touch with the charity who can go out and try to help.

As PP have said we don't recommend giving out money to the homeless. It doesn't help as a long term solution which is what our aim is.

NapQueen Sun 14-May-17 09:24:23

OP practical ways to help:-

1) find out about local soup kitchens. Volunteer there if you can. Carry around copies of lists of them to give to homeless people if they need the info

2) buy hot drinks and warm filling to go food and give to the homeless rather than the equivalent in cash. Ive no issue thinking cash I give may go on alcohol - surely being a bit drunk helps with warmth and sleep? But I would hate to think my money went on drugs.

3) run a coat drive. Appeal to friends family colleagues etc for donations of unwanted coats, duvets, sleeping bags, roll mats. Dish them out to those in need.

4) volunteer for homeless charities

And as above

5) dont vote Tory

C0RAL Sun 14-May-17 09:28:28

I am involved with a homelessness charity in another city ( not London ) and agree with everything MojoMoon said.

Please don't give money. Support one the charities that work in this area, either with your time or your money.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now