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Why do people beg?

Most people who beg do so because they have serious problems in their lives – with their mental and physical health, and with alcohol and drug addictions.

In our experience most people who beg are not homeless, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need and deserve help. They absolutely do.

It’s just that they very often have problems no amount of loose change, food or drink can resolve. Indeed, it is often the case that donations (especially of money) only help to sustain the activities that have led them to beg in the first place.

Should I give to people who beg?

If you are seeking an answer to this question it’s because you have seen somebody that you want to help.

Ultimately this is a matter of personal choice whether you give to somebody or not, but we think it’s important you are able to make an informed choice.

We know that gifts of money can sometimes be damaging. Other gifts such as food and drinks will do no harm, but nor will they help people to make the major changes they need in their lives.

If you see somebody begging who you think may be sleeping rough, please report their location to or call our Street Outreach Team on 0800 066 5356.

Thank you.