A homeless man who had pitched up in Leeds’ Tent City has been reunited with his mum and grandmother after seven years thanks to a video which went viral.
Simon Easton, 25, has been homeless since he was 18 and says he has spent much of his time in and out of jail, homeless shelters and hostels.
After leaving his family home in Sunderland, Simon came to Leeds in search of a job and somewhere to live. But he ended up on a downward spiral and had been living on the streets for more than three months before he ended up in Tent City – an awareness-raising camp set up by campaigners from Leeds Homeless Partnership
Then one day, the campaigners helped him to post a Facebook Live video online.
Simon said: “One man, David, put up the video and made it go viral. It got loads of views. By the time my mum got in contact – my mum’s family was in contact within two hours – 2,000 people had viewed it.”
The video received 925,000 views in less than 24 hours. Soon after, Simon was driven home to Sunderland to be with his family. He thanked all those who helped him and added: “I didn’t know that my mum and my family missed me that much, it had been seven years and they were looking for me the whole time.”