Do you feel like running away from home? 

A young person who wants to run away from home

If things are difficult for you at home, it’s not uncommon to think ‘I want to run away’. Sometimes you may feel forced out of your home by abuse, arguments or violence – we call these ‘pull’ factors. At other times you may want to run away because you’ve been asked to by a peer, gang or a partner – we call these ‘pull’ factors. Whatever the reason, lots of young people don’t know about the risks that they can face when they run away from home.

Have you thought about how you’ll get money for food and drink? When you run away from home you can be vulnerable to groups of individuals who might make you do things you don’t want to in exchange for something in return.

You could end up breaking the law. You could struggle to find somewhere to sleep, or stay healthy in bad weather. You are much more likely to be a victim of sexual exploitation

Being on the streets is a dangerous place to be. Being homeless means you don’t have anywhere to live, nowhere safe to sleep, nowhere to charge your phone, brush your teeth or get a shower – it is not a fun life.

Where to go for help

Luckily there are plenty of places that you can turn to for help if you find yourself thinking ‘I want to run away from home’.

Calling a helpline can be a great way to unburden yourself of your problems, and get good advice from an unbiased person who will listen and will not judge.  

There are also mediation services who can help you and your family deal with the issues that are making you want to run away. You might also want to get information about your situation online, and there are some good websites with advice for young people who find themselves in your situation. If you have an adult or close friend that you know that you can trust, you might want to talk to them about what you’re going through – sometimes a problem shared is a problem halved.

We run services that help young people who are thinking of running away. We can talk to you, listen to what you have to say and offer you support to make the right decisions about your life.

Services that offer support

However you’d like to get help, running away to live on the streets is never the answer and there are always places you can turn to for support, including:

Always remember that if you're in danger or need urgent help, you can call the police by dialing 999.

Listen to the stories of others

It's important to remember that there are other children and young people out there who have been through similar experiences to you. You may want to listen below to the voice of a young person we have worked with who shared their story.