According to government statistics, on any one night, almost 3,000 people will be sleeping rough, throughout England. Whilst many of us think it might not affect us directly – a survey carried out by homelessness charity Shelter uncovered that 3.9 million British families could be just one payday away from losing their homes.
On Saturday 5th March, YMCA East Surrey invites you to join them for their fundraising Sleep Easy event to help combat youth homelessness, within the area.
This will be the fourth consecutive year that the charity have held their sleep out event, which will see local residents and staff camp out, outside the YMCA Sports and Community Centre on Princes Road, Redhill overnight (from 7.30pm to 7.30am) with the aims of raising both funds and awareness for youth homelessness.
“The event not only raises money, but importantly; awareness too,” Kim Roderick from the charity says. “People often make the assumption that homelessness is an issue that only affects inner city areas, as it may not be as obvious in other areas with people ‘sofa surfing’ etc. It is still happening and these people are very vulnerable.”
YMCA East Surrey hopes to provide an affordable home for those aged 16-30 and who haven’t got anywhere else to turn.
Hillbrook House on Brighton Road in Redhill, offers safe and secure accommodation, where those in need can stay for up to two years. The house has 44 self-contained rooms, of which 40 of these include housing support, whereby homeless young people are supported in accessing education, training or work as part of the move towards independent living.
“It’s not just about having a roof over your head,” Kim continues, “as a result of being homeless, there can be barriers for young people, including not being able to find employment and requiring further education.”
With the money raised from the Sleep Easy event, the charity will be assisting those without homes to gain a more-permanent residence and also, through the support of their key workers and their employment support fund; help young people get back onto their feet (and give them the skills to do so!) so that they can live happily and independently.
“Spend a night out and help us to beat homelessness!” Kim says.
To find out more or book your place under the stars, visit: www.ymcaeastsurrey.org.uk/sleepeasy.
The cost is £10 for adults and £5 for 16 – 18 year olds. Those aged 16 must be accompanied by an adult.