Prince William writes for Norway’s homeless / News / The Foreigner

Prince William writes for Norway’s homeless. His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales has written an exclusive charity article as a tribute to the homeless, following first-hand experience from sleeping rough on the streets of London. The Prince calls the homeless “restorers of hope, who care for the welfare of homeless people around the world”. He has followed in the footsteps of his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, becoming Patron of Centrepoint, the leading charity for young homeless people in the UK, in 2005. HRH wrote the charity Christmas article for the Street News Service (SNS), the news agency of the International Network of Street Papers (INSP) with a global family of 115 titles, including the UK’s Big Issue,  L’Itinéraire in Canada, Street Roots in the US, and Journey Home in Russia. INSP estimates five million readers in 40 countries read their ‘street’ magazines and newspapers.

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Prince William writes for Norway’s homeless

Published on Friday, 17th December, 2010 at 15:04 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 17th December 2010 at 15:24.

His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales has written an exclusive charity article as a tribute to the homeless, following first-hand experience from sleeping rough on the streets of London.

HRH Prince William of Wales at ICAP Charity Day
HRH Prince William of Wales at ICAP Charity Day
Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images


Dignity

The Prince calls the homeless “restorers of hope, who care for the welfare of homeless people around the world”. He has followed in the footsteps of his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, becoming Patron of Centrepoint, the leading charity for young homeless people in the UK, in 2005.

HRH wrote the charity Christmas article for the Street News Service (SNS), the news agency of the International Network of Street Papers (INSP) with a global family of 115 titles, including the UK’s Big Issue,  L’Itinéraire in Canada, Street Roots in the US, and Journey Home in Russia. INSP estimates five million readers in 40 countries read their ‘street’ magazines and newspapers.

Prince William’s article has been translated into Norwegian, and will also be published next month in Øst and Vest-Agder counties’ ‘street’ magazine Klar, Megafon in Bergen, and the capital city’s =Oslo.

The Norwegian Institute for Urban and Regional Research (NIBR) estimates there are presently 6,000 homeless people, with an average age of 35.

=Oslo’s Culture Editor Kari Bu tells The Foreigner she spoke to HRH Crown Prince Haakon, who says he is very troubled about Norway’s homeless. “He is very concerned about their dignity and self-respect. We all know that they are poor, but he tries to focus on their inner, human resources. He says that we need to see everybody as human beings with a story, and try to lift them up instead of judging them. He believes that we raise our own dignity by raising others’ and this is important for everybody's quality of life, and that dignity leads to less poverty and conflicts in the world. He thinks that our vendors do an important job by breaking down barriers between people. Magazines like ours lead to conversations on the street between people who would not usually speak together,” she says.

The magazine costs 50 kroner and the vendor keeps half.

His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales’ exclusive article written for SNS is below.

Prince William: “Street newspapers inspire me”

By His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales for the Street News Service.

He slept rough on the streets of London to experience first-hand what it is like to be homeless. Following in the footsteps of his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, he became a Patron of Centrepoint; the leading charity for young homeless people in the UK. And now –for the first time since his engagement announcement last month- he speaks up to support street papers worldwide.

The exclusive article below is written by His Royal Highness Prince William of Wales for the Street News Service (SNS). SNS is the news agency of the International Network of Street Papers, which supports 115 street papers in 40 countries. The titles help homeless people around the world to earn a living.

“The economic downturn has had a devastating effect on the numbers of homeless rough sleepers in our communities. In London alone, rough sleeping has risen by almost a quarter in just two years, and that figure does not even include those who have been forced out of their homes into temporary accommodation or overcrowded housing.

There are many reasons why someone can find themselves homeless: family breakdown, unemployment, drug or alcohol abuse, or falling on desperately hard times, often through no fault of their own.  But the effect of homelessness is the same for everyone: a crushing sense of hopelessness and despair. The emotional consequences for the individual can be utterly devastating – sometimes more so than the stark fact of being homeless.

Charities, churches, governments and other bodies can all help with the basics – a roof under which to shelter from the elements, heating and security – but without hope, an individual cannot rebuild a life. And for there to be people with no hope living right alongside us is surely a blight on our societies.

That is why the work of the restorers of hope – street newspapers [like The Big Issue], my own charity Centrepoint and other organisations and individuals who care – so inspire me. They give homeless people the tools with which to rebuild their confidence and, ultimately, their lives.

I have met many homeless young people who are now filled with a passion and desire to achieve in life, simply because they were given a little support at the right time to get back on their feet.  These are people of extraordinary courage.  There can be a perception that they have given up and lack courage.  Let me tell you, they have not and they do not.  I count myself enormously privileged to be associated with such individuals.  I salute all the organisations that are there for them.”

Article reproduced in its entirety, by kind permission of Street News Service.

About street papers

Street papers exist to tackle homelessness and poverty. Vendors buy their street paper or magazine at cost price before hitting the streets to sell the latest editions at the cover price – generating an income for themselves. Street papers offer homeless and marginalised people the chance to earn a living. At the same time they are a distinctive and quality independent media –challenging public perceptions of poverty and social injustice in cities across the globe (source: SNS).



Published on Friday, 17th December, 2010 at 15:04 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 17th December 2010 at 15:24.

This post has the following tags: hrh, prince, william, wales, crown, haakon, charity, article, street, news, service, homeless, magazine, paper, international, network.





  
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