Advocates launch emergency youth homelessness fund

Local LGBTIQ+ advocates have launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise emergency funds in support of young people experiencing homelessness.

The PICYS Pride Assist Fund will be used to aid in the work of the Perth Inner City Youth Service, and allocated to supporting the needs of LGBTIQ+ folks under the age of 26 who are sleeping rough amidst the COVID-19 pandemic and associated economic turmoil.

Community advocate Paul van Lieshout Hunt said the PICYS Pride Assist Fund was an urgently needed backstop for at risk youth.

“Young LGBTI people face a much tougher path than their heterosexual peers.” van Lieshout Hunt said.

“In the current housing market, there is an even higher risk young queer kids could end up on the streets.”

PICYS are currently providing support to at least 20 young LGBTIQ+ folks, and the fund aims to raise $10,000 through the GoFundMe page. Pride WA have also thrown their support behind the initiative.

“This fund is vital, and Pride WA will support the community in any way that we can,’ the Pride WA committee said in a statement.

So far, we have firm commitments over $1000 which shows how our community can come together in a time of need.”

Members of the community are encouraged to donate to the fund which will be deposited directly into PICYS bank account.

In a separate but coordinated effort, Pride WA and PICYS are working with local community heroes Jane Armstrong and her partner Sim Gjergjevica who run the Homelessness; We Care project to deliver weekly and fortnightly meal packages to young LGBTI people struggling financially.

Volunteers are sought to help cook, assemble and deliver the packages to those in need.

You can find more information at the PICYS Pride Assist Fund on GoFundMe.

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