Drive to combat Havering’s rising homelessness

GOVERNMENT figures have revealed the number of homeless people in Havering has more than doubled in the last quarter.

Statistics from the Deparment for Communities and Local Government show 38 households were accepted homeless by Havering Council between June and September this year compared to just 15 in the previous quarter (March to June).

The figures were published on Thursday December 9 and showed homelessness across the country is on the rise and in Havering the picture has worsened more than any of its neighbouring London boroughs, even though their figures are considerably higher.

Barking and Dagenham’s homelessness fell by almost half from 96 to 53, Newham went from 25 homeless households to 21 and Redbridge increased by just two households to 92.

The figures also show 457 homeless households in Havering will be spending Christmas in temporary accommodation.

Now two charities are hoping to raise awareness of the problem to help combat it - housing charity Shelter and the YMCA, which supports young people in times of need including providing shelter for those that are homeless.

Campbell Robb, chief executive of Shelter, said: “We know from the cases we see every day that just one single thing, like a bout of illness, rent increase or drop in income, is all that’s needed push people into spiral of debt and arrears that can lead to the loss of their home.”

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“At a time of year when many people are taking on extra debt, Shelter is urging anyone struggling with their housing costs to urgently seek advice.”

Shelter provides a free helpline on 0808 800 4444 or visit to get advice.

On Friday January 28 Romford YMCA is hosting an outdoor sleepover event for the charity’s nationwide Sleep Easy campaign to raise awareness of the plight of the homeless and raise money to help local young people.

Friends, employees and supporters of the Romford YMCA will be sleeping rough on what is historically the coldest night of the year for the second year running. To take part or make a donation email or visit

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