Ending homelessness, rebuilding lives

Down and Out? The final report of St Mungo’s Call 4 Evidence: Mental health and street homelessness

"Over 40 years of helping rough sleepers, at St Mungo’s we have come to realise that street homelessness is about much more than the simple lack of a home."

The statistics are stark. Our Happiness Matters peer research this year dug deep into the mental health experiences of homeless men and women, and found that a staggering 76% of interviewees who lived on the streets
or in hostels, had some form of mental health problem – either diagnosed by a doctor (65%) or self identified (11%).

Those with a diagnosed mental health problem turn to drugs or alcohol ‘because it is easier than coping with my life’. Our Client Needs Survey this year revealed that of our hostel clients who have slept rough, 69% have a mental health need (whether this mental health issue has been formally diagnosed or not) and 61% have both a mental health need and a substance use problem.

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