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Climbing The Ladder Of Youth Homelessness

The AFL Players’ Association has presented youth homelessness charity Ladder with their annual donation.

Ladder, the official AFL players’ charity, is an independent not-for-profit organisation established in 2007 to help young people aged between 16-25 break the cycle of homelessness.

As a partner of the AFLPA, Ladder receive annual donations, with $217,800 being given as a total for 2016.

The partnership includes each AFL player donating $25 of their match payment to the cause, with more than $1.4 million being contributed by the players to Ladder since 2008.

Currently in Australia, over 26,000 people aged between 15 and 24 are homeless on any given night with the overall figure reaching 105,000 — more than the capacity of the MCG.

The main cause of homelessness is domestic or family violence as well as family or relationship breakdown, but there are a number of pathways to homelessness, including mental illness, financial difficulties, substance use and a lack of affordable housing.

The most common form of homelessness for young people is couch surfing — moving from house to house and temporarily sleeping on a couch, spare room or whatever space is free with friends, extended family or people they may feel unfamiliar with.