Depaul UK is a youth homelessness charity which supports young people aged 16-25 years old, who are homeless and at risk.
We provide emergency and long-term supported accommodation to keep young people safe, and help them to progress beyond homelessness.
We believe that everyone should have a stake in their community and a place to call home.
Frankie lives in Depaul accommodation in London.
The project offers a high level of support and has 24 hour staff. Residents are mostly between 18 to 25 years old.
In her own words, here's Frankie's story:
"When I was 20, my father passed away and my mum got unwell.
"I had to look after her and the house. I tried to sort out the bills, but I didn’t realise how much debt we had and couldn’t clear the rent.
"We were given notice and asked to leave. It didn’t seem real at first. Then they gave us a date. I phoned up the housing association to tell them about our situation, but it didn’t help. My mum had to move into a care home and I went into a hostel for holiday makers.
"Then the council referred me to temporary accommodation. Here, we had to find a space and get out folding canvas beds every night. There were eleven boys in one room and five girls in the other. It felt like an office space and you had to be careful what you said or did. People were on top of each other. Anything like snoring could start an argument.
"After six weeks, I was referred to Depaul. I moved into one of their houses in West London. I didn’t know anyone so kept to myself at first, but the house had a good atmosphere and the staff were really friendly. They made me laugh and feel welcome.
"I was assigned a Depaul progression coach. I often go over problems in my head so she helped me with this a lot. We talk things over and address feelings of anxiety and depression.
"The staff at Depaul encouraged me to get involved with other activities. I went to a Cardboard Citizens theatre production about the mind and dealing with emotions. I also got involved with the running charity. We do really intense circuit training. Overtime I have gained confidence and now go more regularly.
"I‘ve been with Depaul since 2016, so over a year and a half now. At Depaul I feel more settled. I am happier more often than before.
I’ve always been interested in theatre and youth work. I use to volunteer in the theatre at college and help out backstage with props. I also helped other students with work through the learning and support department. I’d be interested in starting a career in these areas or with animals, because I love animals."
Donate to Help Young People like Frankie
Depaul UK relies on our wonderful supporters to help us to provide safe accommodation and long term support, to young people like Frankie.
If you'd like to help young people experiencing homelessness in the UK, please donate to our charity.
*The image used with this story is for illustration and for privacy reasons is not of the young person featured in this case study.