While most of us think that homelessness is not something that will impact our daily lives, the reality, as two Cornwall-based authors have shown, is that it can affect any one of us.

Catrina Davies and Raynor Winn will now be sharing their experiences and reading from their latest works, which cover the subject, at an event at CAST in Helston this Friday at 7pm, which is supported by St Petroc's.

In her early 30s, Catrina was living in shared accommodation, “grafting, worrying, drinking wine on my own and teetering on the edge of depression”. At rock bottom, she decided to return to West Penwith and make a home in a tumbledown garden shed.

In her bestselling book, Homesick, she describes how hers and the lives of many people in Cornwall have been affected by homelessness.

Catrina’s book comes hot on the heels of Raynor Winn’s award-winning memoir, The Salt Path. Raynor suffered the dual tragedy of learning that her husband of 32 years was terminally ill just days before losing their home. With nothing left and few options open to them, they set off to walk the 630 miles of the South West Coast Path.

A connection to nature is important to both authors. A sense of belonging and being at home is not just about people and money, “but about perceiving ourselves as part of an ecosystem”, according to Catrina.

And she feels that more radical policies are the answer. “Politics needs to put the needs of people front and centre, instead of always prioritising the market," she said, suggesting a new policy of bringing second homes into public ownership and renting them out with affordable rents.

Dave Brown, from St Petroc’s, said Cornwall’s dedicated homelessness charity was keen to raise awareness at this particularly challenging time of year, adding: "It wouldn’t be possible without the tremendous support we receive from the Cornish community”.