Table of Contents
- Anyone Can Become Homeless and That Is Not Okay
- What Each of Us Can Do to Stop This Issue?
How would you feel, every night having to sleep out on the streets with just as much as a blanket – no phone, no money, no food? How would you feel everyday having people look down on you, scared, disgusted, as they walk right past? How would you feel, never knowing where you’re going to sleep or even if you’re going to survive the night? For over 116,000 Australians, this is their reality. On any given night, 1 in 200 people in Australia are homeless. This is atrocious. In this homelessness research paper we will delve into this issue of the world as it must be recognised as one. It is time for a change – homelessness must be fixed and stopped!
Anyone Can Become Homeless and That Is Not Okay
Anyone can become homeless. Did you know that 15,872 or 10% of all homeless Australians are under 12 years old? There are a number of reasons and contributing factors as to why someone may become homeless; but there is one that stands above the rest. Domestic violence. 25% of homeless Australians seeking help are women and children that have escaped from a violent relationship. Many of these women are over the age of 45 and many and have had to bring their children with them. For these women, being at home with their partner was not safe, and they had nowhere else to go. Many have little to no money, so, homelessness has had to become their life. Domestic violence is not the only cause as to why people become homeless. Lack of affordable housing or no longer being able to afford rent, poverty, losing a job or unemployment, having just left the army or prison, and mental illness are also very common reasons that can trigger an individual to be homeless. In 2010, ½ of the homeless people that sought help from a specialist service were under 25. One example of a teenager that has had to experience sleeping on the streets is Freya. Freya was 15 when she became homeless in the streets of Brisbane. Both of Freya’s parents were alcoholics and neither were adequate enough to parent her, so becoming homeless was the best and safest option. For homeless teenagers, overcrowding, physical health complications, intellectual disabilities and mental health issues are the main causes as to why they are homeless. Around 1.6 billion people are currently homeless around the world and countless of them are teenagers and children. Homelessness must be stopped.
There are numerous problems and negative effects that come with homelessness. Don’t you think that as a human right, everyone deserves to feel safe and secure? Well, the homeless do not. All humans have the right to a suitable standard of living, the right of freedom and security and the right of privacy and social security; however homeless people do not have these rights. This means that homelessness is a human right issue. Being homeless, especially for a long period of time, can significantly damage someone’s both physical and mental health. A person who is homeless is 8 times more likely to be a victim of violence and over 9 times likely to commit suicide than the general population. More than 1 in 3 people have deliberately been violently abused while homeless. This is horrific as humans should not have to suffer and go through that pain. However, because of this, it is heart-breaking, but not surprising that on average, homeless people do not live past the age of 50. So many people throughout the world have to endure these sickening problems and painful experiences whilst living homeless. Homelessness must be stopped.
What Each of Us Can Do to Stop This Issue?
Everyone is able to offer help to change someone’s life. Even you. But what can you do? The first step is to show respect to the homeless. Little things such as smiling or talking to them can make their day. Many homeless people say that even harder than the loss of their physical items, is the loss of dignity. Next, is to donate and volunteer. By donating just, the simplest of things, can change a life. Teach others and advocate. By doing all, or just one of these things, it will, along with helping the homeless significantly, make yourself feel better and happier that you have helped. There are many charities that support homelessness. One of them is Orange Sky. Orange Sky is an Australian mobile laundry service that washes and cleans the clothes of a homeless person and there are many other charities and organisations just like it. For many of these charities, you are able to volunteer and help out too. Although the government must really be doing more to help such as offering assistance and subsidised housing. We as a community, and a country, must do what we can first. Volunteer and help with charities, smile, donate and advocate. All of these things can change a life, so, you must do what you can. Homelessness must be stopped.
Homelessness is a worldwide social issue that we can stop, if only we put in the effort. Many people believe that homelessness is just sleeping on the streets, but, only 7% of homeless people actually do sleep on the streets. People staying in refuges , crisis accommodation, move from one temporary accommodation to another, sleep in cars or sleep in cheap hotels are also considered homeless. However, this doesn’t mean that it still isn’t an issue. So many people of all ages and backgrounds can become homeless and for so many different reasons. Do you really want 116,000 people to constantly suffer and go through pain, or do you want to help stop it? Australia has such a rich economy, so, not one person should have to suffer living without a home. An Albert Einstein states - “The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who ok on and do nothing.” Don’t just watch from the sidelines, make a difference in someone’s life now!
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