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YHMD 2024

Youth Homelessness Matters Day (YHMD) is the annual national awareness day for youth homelessness in Australia.

Youth Homelessness Matters Day

Youth Homelessness Matters Day (YHMD) is Wednesday April 17.

It’s a national day that aims to raise awareness and public discussion about child and youth homelessness. It’s a day to start conversations about sustainable and innovative solutions to support the needs of young people experiencing homelessness.

Why Youth Homelessness Matters

Youth homelessness is a significant social issue that affects more than 45,000  young people in Australia every year. It can have devastating consequences, leading to a cycle of poverty, mental health struggles, and limited opportunities for these young people.

By raising awareness and understanding the root causes of youth homelessness, we can work together to create solutions and provide support to those in need.


A letter from our leaders

This Youth Homelessness Matters Day 2024, we need your urgent support to stop young people becoming a statistic. Mental health issues amongst children and young people are on the rise. Family violence has increased, and the higher cost of living and housing crisis is pushing more children, young people and families to the brink of homelessness.

If we don’t do anything to stop this cycle of youth homelessness today, many more children and young people will continue to live in poverty, experiencing trauma and prolonged disadvantage for decades to come.

We need your urgent and ongoing support to help our most vulnerable young people because youth homelessness matters, not just today but every day.

It’s our mission at Lighthouse Foundation to end youth homelessness, but we can only do that with your help. However small or large, your donation or regular giving will make a big difference to vulnerable children and young people’s lives.

Len Warson
Chairman, Lighthouse Foundation

Dr. Eamonn McCarthy
CEO, Lighthouse Foundation

*45,000 figure from 2021 Census data.

"Before coming to Lighthouse, it was hard to feel safe in my family home. I didn't feel like being around my stepdad because he'd hurt my mum."

Olivia's Story

Donate today

In Australia, youth homelessness is a pressing issue, with over 45,000 babies, children and young people are without a safe home on any given night. 

Become a Lighthouse Keeper

Your ongoing donation makes a difference.

Giving $10

Provides a toiletry pack full of essential items including sanitary and dental products

Foster Care IconGiving $25

Can provide fresh groceries to make nutritious, comforting meals in our homes.

Giving $50

Contribute to the cost of group therapy to help our young people process the trauma of homelessness

Lighthouse Foundation is also a deductible gift recipient (DGR). The minimum tax-deductible donation amount to Lighthouse Foundation is $5.

Your personal data will be used to process your donation, support your experience throughout this website, and for other purposes described in our privacy policy.

Donate here


Who is Lighthouse Foundation?

Lighthouse Foundation is a non-profit organisation dedicated to supporting and empowering young people experiencing homelessness in Australia. We provide safe homes, essential services, and comprehensive support programs to help vulnerable youth rebuild their lives.

What is youth homelessness?

Youth homelessness refers to the condition in which young people lack stable and safe accommodation. This can include sleeping rough, couch-surfing, or staying in temporary shelters. Homelessness among youth can result from various factors, including family breakdown, domestic violence, mental health issues, and financial instability.

What are the long-term effects of youth homelessness?

Youth homelessness can have profound and lasting effects on individuals’ physical health, mental well-being, education, employment prospects, and overall quality of life.

Without adequate support, homeless youth may face increased risks of substance abuse, exploitation, mental illness, and involvement in criminal activities.

How prevalent is youth homelessness in Australia?

Youth homelessness remains a significant social issue in Australia.

According to the latest Census data, 44,000 young Australians experience homelessness on any given night. Factors such as housing affordability, family conflict, and insufficient support services contribute to this ongoing challenge.

What services does Lighthouse Foundation provide to homeless youth?

Lighthouse offers a range of services aimed at addressing the complex needs of homeless youth.

These include safe housing, mental health support, education and employment assistance, life skills training, and access to healthcare.

The Lighthouse Model of Care focuses on empowering young people to overcome barriers and achieve independence.

How can I support Lighthouse Foundation's mission to end youth homelessness?

There are several ways to support Lighthouse and our efforts to end youth homelessness.

You can make a donation to fund our programs and services, volunteer your time and skills, advocate for policy changes that address the underlying causes of homelessness, or participate in fundraising events and campaigns.

Every contribution, no matter how small, makes a meaningful difference in the lives of young people in need.

“This floor, this warm carpet, this room that has a door I can close ... is all I need,” Asan told the carers. “This is the best I have ever known. You can put another person in that bed.”


“learning to live with structure and allowing someone else to care for me was hard”, but for the first time, in a long time, she was safe.

Bianca and baby Kaylan's story

Lighthouse has given Dylan a ‘safe place’ – somewhere to call home. He has developed strong bonds with members of our Care team and prefers to hang out with his Carers and other Lighthouse community members rather than being involved with negative influences.

Dylan's Story

I'm wondering why I never contacted these guys sooner! Seriously, they all have commendable talent in their respective fields and knocked my concept out of the ballpark. Thanks for an amazing experience!

Jack GrahamCo Founder, Coffee Inc
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