Join sleep out to raise cash for homeless charities
A homeless charity is holding a 'sleep out', encouraging people to swap their beds for a sleeping bag for a night.
This comes a week after it was revealed that Brighton and Hove was second only to Westminster when it comes to the number of rough sleepers.
Brighton and Hove recorded 178 rough sleepers at a count in November, a 24 per cent rise from 2016 when the figure was 144.
YMCA DownsLink Group (YMCA DLG) is hosting 'Sleep Easy' on Friday, March 16 to raise cash for the charity, and for its campaign, Galvanise Brighton and Hove.
Sleep Easy is a national YMCA event where volunteers are invited to swap their beds for a sleeping bag to make a difference to local people in need.
Organisers said 'it won’t be warm or comfortable, but this is an opportunity to do something remarkable for the local community'.
A volunteer who took part in Sleep Easy last year said: “It was a really eye-opening experience. It made me think about things I hadn’t even considered before about sleeping rough. The work YMCA do is indispensable.”
Another said, “I’m hoping that my night sleeping rough means others don’t have to. The event was great fun and I met some lovely people.”
Nicola Rowe, head of communities for YMCA DLG in the south of Sussex, said, “The most recent figures reveal that homelessness is rising. In the past two years alone, rough sleeping is up 51 per cent across England and we see evidence of that in Brighton and Hove.
"We have a real opportunity to change that. Sleep Easy 2018 will raise money for both GalvaniseBH and YMCA DLG’s Life Change Fund. I encourage anyone with a concern for the homeless to sign up and raise money to make a difference.”
YMCA DLG provides safe accommodation and opportunities for young people who have been made, or are at risk of becoming, homeless. Its Life Change Fund makes money available to young people in specific financial need, supporting them to take up an opportunity (such as training or education) that would have a transformative impact on their life.
The charity leads the Galvanise Brighton & Hove, a community-led campaign to find creative solutions to homelessness. It is part of the European Campaign to End Street Homelessness, a project that has seen over 1,000 volunteers survey rough sleepers in cities across Europe, from Valencia to London.
To find out more about Sleep Easy, and to sign up, visit: www.ymcadlg.org/SleepEasy18/