Children Rough Sleepers are vulnerable children who, as such, can become victims of sexual exploitation and abuse and even perpetrators of crime in order to survive on the streets.
Policy development over the last 20 years has had little impact: the numbers of rough sleeping children has increased Europe-wide, their needs remain unmet and preventative protection measures have hardly benefited them.
From January 2013 to December 2014 ICDI was involved as one of the partners in a pan-European project called ‘Children Rough Sleepers’.
Please, visit also the official CRS website here.
The Overall Objective of this project was to gather knowledge and compare findings and best practices on the problem of children and young people who have to live on the streets in eight European countries. It is estimated that in the Netherlands there are well over a 1000 children under 18 years who do not have stable housing and around 9000 between 18 and 23 years of age.
As part of this project, ICDI conducted interviews with 20 young people who are homeless and 20 professionals who work with this target group.
We also organized six workshops for around 120 professionals on topics like ‘Housing First’, ‘Social Parenting’, and ‘Open Talent’ (innovative approaches in working with homeless youth).
At the same time, six information workshops were facilitated by ICDI for around 120 highschool students in six of the big cities in the Netherlands. Former homeless youth were guest speakers, to increase awareness on the issue of homeless youth.
We concluded the project with a final conference in Leiden focusing on new, best practices to prevent youth homelessness and support those who already end up on the street.
In this project, led by the University of Wolverhampton in the UK, research took place into the reasons, problems, needs and wishes of children and young people who are homeless in England, Slovenia, Portugal, Spain, Hungary, Romania, Czech Republic, Poland and The Netherlands.