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Nighstop social value research
June 4th, 2018
Research by the youth homelessness charity Depaul UK estimates that by improving the physical safety of young people at risk of homelessness, its Nightstop service could have saved the UK government as much as £1.1million last year.
Nightstop – which is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery (PPL) – is an emergency accommodation network run by Depaul UK that links young people in crisis with trained volunteer hosts who accommodate them in their own home.
Depaul UK’s research found that a young person who Nightstop supports in improving their physical safety – by preventing them from sleeping on the street or another unsafe location – saves the Government an average of £1,500. Depaul UK estimates that more than a third (35 percent) of individuals who Nightstop supports would have avoided at least one incident of violence by making use of the service.
Nicola Harwood, Depaul UK’s Associate Director for Prevention, said: “When young people ask for help from Nightstop, they have nowhere else to turn. By finding them a safe place to stay for the night, we are ensuring they are not at risk of physical, or sexual, violence.
“We are very proud of the lasting impact that this small amount of support can have on the individual and wider society. After ensuring young people have a safe haven from which they can plan their next steps, our Nightstop staff work to help them find more permanent, safe accommodation.”
Depaul UK surveyed young people who had been supported by Nightstop, and found more than a third (36 percent) said that if it were not for Nightstop they might have slept on the streets or in a park, with a quarter (25 percent) saying they would have slept on public transport or in a public building.
The research found that more than 95 percent of young people who used the service felt that it had improved their personal safety.
When estimating costs to the Government, Depaul UK has accounted for potential costs to the NHS, police and criminal justice system per potential violent incident of which a young person could be a victim.
Last year, Nightstop gave a safe place to stay to more than 1,400 young people, providing a total of 11,070 nights of safe accommodation across the UK.