YHP NETHERLANDS – Off the Streets


National programme, with face-to-face engagement with young homeless people in Utrecht.


2013 - 2015

The local context

The health of people in the Netherlands is generally improving, but accessing health services can be a particular challenge for the 9,000 or so 'officially' homeless young people. Many suffer from addiction, mental, dental, sexual and reproductive health problems, and struggle to find support.

Our objectives

To understand the health needs of young homeless people and develop an effective model for intervention to improve their health.


Our focus

Integrating scientific information with experiential expertise and research.


Our programme

We worked with Impuls, the scientific research centre for social care at Radboud University Medical Health Centre to understand the health status of young homeless people and determine the priorities and focus for a health promotion programme.

We ran workshops with 100 disadvantaged young people in Utrecht to test our hypotheses, identify and establish the building blocks necessary for an effective health promotion programme, and co-create a health intervention model that would help them to secure the health support they needed.

Our achievements

We involved 200 national and local stakeholders, including health insurers, healthcare providers, government agencies and NGOs in reviewing our approach and the health interventions.  

Our partners at the University of Radboud published a summary of the work, together with detailed project information sheets to enable others to benefit from their research and experiential expertise.

Through media and other campaigns we were able to reach 300,000 of the wider population to highlight the plight of homeless young people in the Netherlands.

Published resources:

Our partners

Stichting Zwerfjongeren Nederland works to improve the situation of homeless youth by raising awareness of youth homelessness, bringing together relevant stakeholders and encouraging the active participation of youth themselves.

The Impuls Scientific Research Centre for social care at Radboud University Nijmegen develops, implements and evaluates interventions in the social domain.