Norwich appeal to sleep under stars to help homeless
Individuals and work teams from across Norfolk have signed up to sleep under the stars for a night in early March to help raise funds to support the work of YMCA Norfolk with homeless young people, but more are needed to join them.
The Christian charity’s eighth annual Sleep Easy event takes place at Diocesan House in Easton near Norwich from 7pm on Friday March 3 to 7am on Saturday March 4.
Early Help North, East and Broadland and Insight Financial Associates have already signed up teams to take part and organisers are appealing for churches, youth groups and individuals to join in the fun for a great cause.
Participants will have a number of activities to keep them busy, including building their own cardboard shelters, before they brave the cold and sleep under the stars to raise funds for, and awareness of, homeless and vulnerable young people in Norfolk.
Michael Mills, Assessment and Training Officer is joining a team of teachers and doctors from Early Help North, East and Broadland at the Sleep Easy. He said: “we are passionate that young people get the support they deserve. The fact that in 2017 we still in Britain have a high number of young people sleeping rough, having no support and nowhere to go is not good enough. I want to help raise awareness as this is everyone's responsibility and I believe together we can make a difference.
“By raising funds for YMCA, it means that more young people can have a room over their head and be given hope that they so deserve and need. These young people need someone to just reach out and help them realise their full potential and worth and get them back on track. I challenge people out there to help raise awareness, to take up the challenge and together we can stamp out youth homelessness.”
Kathryn Pells, whose brother works for YMCA Norfolk and took part last year, said: “This is my first Sleep Easy and I am excited to challenge myself to sleep under the stars and support the work of the YMCA.”
Sharon Hollinger, a regular supporter says “We at Insight Financial Associates have supported YMCA Norfolk’s Sleep Easy from the very start and always find it a real challenge that fosters team spirit. It’s certainly not easy to sleep in minus temperatures with just a cardboard shelter and a sleeping bag, but it is also humbling and inspiring to hear the stories of the young people and about the work of the YMCA that helps to bring about transformation and provide a better future for young people. As a business we help people find solutions to purchase their own home and we are always reminded of what a privilege this is when we take part in this event. I would recommend it to any business looking to build a strong team.”
All funds raised from the event will go towards the work of YMCA Norfolk, including supported accommodation provided to over 260 young people every night who might otherwise be homeless.
To find out more and register your interest visit http://www.ymcanorfolk.org/event/sleepeasy/ where you can download a registration form and an information pack. Alternatively, contact organiser Susie Knights on 01603 621263 ext 103 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pictured top are participants at the 2016 Sleep Easy in Norwich. Picture by Julia Holland
See a picture gallery from last year's event.