A charity which supports young homeless people is desperately looking for new volunteer hosts in the Watford area.

Herts Young Homeless is searching for people to take part in its ‘Crashpad’ scheme which offers short-term, emergency accommodation in a host’s home to vulnerable 16 to 17-year-olds that have nowhere else to go.

The length of stay can be from just a few days to up to three weeks. All people needs is a spare room, a “sympathetic ear” and the ability to provide breakfast and dinner.

One Crashpad host said: “We’ve found with the young people we’ve hosted they really do need to get out of their environment and Herts Young Homeless provides them with the opportunity”.

Hosts are given training, offered round the clock support and paid a fee of £23.73 for every night a young person stays with them.

The young person will have signed a Crashpad rules agreement prior to the placement, is only allowed in the house when the host is present and will not have a key.

Herts Young Homeless’ aim is for the young person to return home at the end of their placement but they need a safe place to stay while, with the help of the charity’s mediation team, they work on their relationships with their family.

Crashpad manager Tj Nicholls said: “Our hosts around the county range from single parents to retired couples but what they all have in common is their desire to help young people in need.

“They offer some hope for teenagers who have nowhere else to go.

“I think the reason we may have struggled to get hosts in this area is that not everyone knows about the scheme. More advertising so people know about us can only help.

“Ideally, we would like to have at least four bed spaces in the Watford and Bushey area.”

Herts Young Homeless’ Crashpad scheme has been running since the end of 2002. It received 171 referrals in the year April 2015 to March 2016, providing a total of 1,384 bed nights and currently has 15 bed spaces in volunteers’ homes across the county.

For more information or to apply to be a Crashpad host please email Crashpad@hyh.org.uk.