A talented group of Kirkcaldy young people has created a new phone app aimed at preventing and helping homelessness in Fife.
‘Living Smart’ gives teenagers and young people helpful advice on living choices and steps they can take to prevent becoming homeless or, if they already are, can get advice on how and where to seek help and, above all, keep themselves safe.
It was designed and set up by a group of young volunteers from SmartLiving, part of the LinkLiving charity in Kirkcaldy, and Fixers UK, another charitable group which helps young people to tackle issues affecting them through practical help and resources.
The new app, which is scheduled to go live next month, was previewed at an event in the town’s West Bridge Mill.
It was presented to an audience of assembled guests including Police Scotland, Fife Council, and other organisations dealing with young people.
And, if successful, the LinkLiving volunteers hope the app could be rolled out to more regions around Scotland to help others in similar situations.
It came about when the group was discussing issues around housing and homeless, and going out to local schools to give presentations to pupils on the subject.
The group was introduced to Kobi Cooke from Fixers UK who asked about issues affecting them and what they would like to improve, and they started to discuss homelessness and what they could do to help.
Amy Goodfellow (24), from Kirkcaldy, explained that the issue was close to her and the other members’ hearts as most of them had experienced homelessness at some point.
“We wanted to do something to help people who found themselves in a position of facing homelessness -to help either stop it from happening, or to give them practical advice if it did, and we came up with the idea for a phone app,” she explained.
Chris Douse (21), from Kirkcaldy, added: “Most people have a mobile phone and we thought it would be a better way to have this advice at their fingertips rather than lots of leaflets, so we went ahead with the phone app.”
They were given lots of practical help and support in getting their idea off the ground by LinkLiving and Fixers UK, with Kofi guiding them along the way.
“They did all of the work themselves and I was just really there to help provide the resources or find things out for them when needed – it was all down to their enthusiasm that it has come about,” he said.