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Spend a Friday night under the stars for the most unique networking experience and help us prevent youth homelessness
When: Friday 9th March 2018
Where: Location TBC please check our website for information
Time: 7pm – 7am
What is it?
Sleep Easy is a national YMCA fundraising initiative. The aim is simple: spend a night challenging yourself to sleep rough, raising money to help change the lives of vulnerable young people. All the money you raise goes directly to support our accommodation services in Cambridge. In 2017 our Cambridge event at St Catharine’s College Sports Ground raised over £11,000 towards support in our accommodation service which including welcome packs for each resident to help them settle in to their new home.
What is homelessness?
Over 3,500 people are estimated to sleep rough in the UK every night, 1 in 5 of these people are aged between 16 – 24. In 2017 12,860 young people were accepted as being homeless by local authorities across the UK. Sadly these figures do not take into account young people who are ‘Sofa Surfing’ after being estranged from friends and family.
Homelessness is defined by the Government as ‘having no permanent home to go to’. The reality is you don’t have to be on the streets to be considered homeless, many homeless young people ‘sofa surf’ relying on the goodwill of others for a bed for the night and in some cases many years. 27% of young people became homeless due to relatives or friends no longer being able or willing to provide accommodation
Imagine how you would cope if you became homeless through no fault of your own. Maybe you were fleeing an arranged marriage? Or escaping from physical, mental or sexual abuse? Or your parents have found a new partner who simply doesn’t want you around? Where would you go? How isolated would you feel?
Homeless people’s lives can get out of control very quickly; they can find themselves moving from place to place sometimes daily, often sharing their living space with strangers. With limited access to support and financial help serious issues can often occur, but it doesn’t have to be like this.
YMCA Trinity Group provides emergency and short term accommodation for homeless young people. In 2016/17 our accommodation at Queen Anne House, Cambridge was able to provide a safe place to stay for over 250 young people who had nowhere else to turn. Through the one to one support our key workers provide, they have been able to facilitate a young person moving on to independent living in the community every 8 days.
What will Sleep Easy Cambridge 2018 involve?
Starting at 7pm at our iconic city location, the night will involve activities that best replicate what it’s like to actually sleep on the streets. You will be provided with hot refreshments, entertainment and materials to make a shelter. However the reality is that many young people do not have the luxury of running water and toilet facilities as we will do in the college.
Sleeping in the grounds of the college you will experience what it’s like to get minimal sleep as you feel vulnerable to the elements and other people around.
You quickly realise how cold it gets, even though you are able to bring your own sleeping equipment. At sunrise we will wake you up with a hot drink and breakfast before you return back to normal life after just one night on the streets.
Sadly for thousands of young people the reality is very different.
For additional details please visit: