Remember, we're a confidential service.

How to cover your tracks for viewing this site.

Call or text for free on 116000

What you need to know about "Homelessness"

We hope what you see here helps. If you are feeling like running away or are away from home, we are here to listen.
Call or Text 116 000 or email For free and in confidence.
For info about 1-2-1 chat times or to chat live, click the pink chat button below.


Homelessness is when you have nowhere that you can live. Being homeless and being a runaway are different things – if you are have left the place you were staying and are choosing to not return rather than being unable to return, then you are a runaway and not technically homeless, whereas if you have nowhere to go and have no choice but to be on the streets, this is being homeless.

If you are 16-17 and become homeless, you are more likely be able to get accommodation through the council or emergency housing – if the council thinks you are in “priority need” then they might be able to find you somewhere to stay while they look for a more permanent place.

If you have problems with this then contact Shelter, who should be able to help you.  If you are aged 16-25 then you could have access to foyers if you are in employment or education – foyers are set up to help prepare you for independent living and can offer you some support while you are there. You usually have access to foyers from 6 months to 2 years. If you are younger than 16, then you cannot live independently and social services should sort out a place for you to stay with an adult to care for you like foster care or a children’s home.


Videos about homelessness

LGBT Youth Experience Homelessness
Biomation Productions C.I.C.
Sophia Thakur
Are you thinking of running away because you have been affected by Homelessness?
Get in touch with us
Share this article

who else can help?

It looks like you’re accessing this website from outside the United Kingdom.

The Runaway Helpline can only provide services to children and young people within the United Kingdom, and information and advice on this site relates to the UK only.

I understand