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Being Homeless at Christmas

Caroline McDonald shares what its like working with a homeless family with no recourse to public funds

As Christmas time approaches, we are often reminded of the importance of family relationships and being together with our loved ones. However, this isn’t the case for many people including those who reside in temporary or homeless accommodation. In Scotland there is 15,711 children who are recorded as homeless in 2019/2020. These numbers paint a worrying picture

This week one of the families that I support had a new baby. I was delighted to hear that the baby arrived safe and sound. Life for this couple is challenging because they are homeless and reside in temporary accommodation. Furthermore, they face many more barriers because they have ‘No Recourse to Public Funds’, this means that they receive very little income from the Government and they cannot access the variety of financial supports available to new parents. I was able to gather some lovely gifts for the baby including warm blankets, toiletries, toys and clothing. The new parents were overjoyed with all the lovely gifts as they have so little.