Would You Take In a Stranger? TX: 11 Jul 2017, Week 28


Airing in a week of programmes on Channel 4 and More 4 exploring issues of housing and homelessness.

Arguing with mum or dad is part of daily life for most teenagers but it’s also the number one reason they run away from home. If they can’t find a place to stay they’re at high risk of long term homelessness so the first 24 hours are crucial.

With all the recent cuts to services and when there are no more sofas to surf, sleeping rough is becoming a reality for more and more people. Over 83,000 young people were identified as homeless last year. Around a quarter of these manage to find some kind of accommodation. But for those who don’t Nightstop, an emergency accommodation service, has enlisted the help of over 600 families who are willing to offer their spare room and act as a host for a night whilst a longer term solution can be found. From families in flats to those living in country estates, people are stepping up to take in the young and homeless in their moment of crisis.

The programme follows three young people in very different circumstances who have come to Nightstop in need of emergency accommodation:

Kieran is a 17-year-old boy at college who has fallen out with his family. With exams to contend with and no experience of sleeping away from home, the Nightstop workers know he wouldn’t survive even one night on the street. The race is on to find him a bed for the night.

Dandi, 21 has been using Nightstop on and off for three years due to a tricky relationship with her mum. She comes across as so smiley and well-presented that in the past youth workers haven’t always believed her when she has told them she’s homeless.

Paul is 25 and nearing the end of his time with Nightstop, time is running out to find him a long-term solution.

For the young people the encounters can be anything from life-saving to life affirming, but one thing is for sure, small acts of kindness are part of a much bigger picture that turns lives around and helps put people back on track – as well as keeping them out of danger, even if it’s only one night at a time. Kieran has now got a two year placement in supported lodgings and is doing well at college, Dandi decided to go back home to her mum and Paul has moved into permanent accommodation.

Would You Take In a Stranger? 10pm, Tuesday 11 July, More 4

Prod/Dir: Ben Freedman

Exec Prod: Tamsin Summers

Prod Co: Drummer Television

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