We are working in several secondary schools to identify 11-16 year olds who are at hidden risk of homelessness.
About our school-based prevention work
We are working in several secondary schools in Manchester.
We are using the internationally-evaluated Upstream digital survey to identify 11-16 year olds who are at hidden risk of homelessness.
We are providing evidence-backed support based on the individual school and community needs:
- Family mediation and support
- Individual holistic health support
- Homelessness prevention programmes, including parental support
We aim to start small and build on this as we secure further support and additional funding.
Our initial focus
Our initial pilots are focussing on 11-16 year olds outside of the care system who are nonetheless at a higher future risk of homeless.
Young people who are 'clearly at heightened risk'
These are young people who can be easily identified by their local community and exhibit risk-tied behaviours, for example:
- Sleeping away from home
- Underperforming or disengaged at school
- Young offenders
Young people who are 'hidden but at heightened risk'
These are young people who couldn't be easily identified by their school communities based on external factors. In a recent Welsh study of more than 800 young people, more than 60% of those identified at risk of homelessness showed little or no risk of school disengagement.
We aim to generate robust knowledge and future expansion of effective interventions.
Role of schools
Schools are often a safe space for young people away from home, and a powerful place for engagement with young people at risk.
Schools are key partners in the success of the prevention pilots; students complete the Upstream survey in the classroom. And support that follows is tailored to the individual student and school's needs.
We are seeking to form strong partnerships with schools to work in collaboration to shape our prevention.
Role of third sector and local authority partners
We are seeking partners with extensive experience in pre-16 school contexts to carry out further surveys and provide subsequent support.