ORGANISERS of a charity sleep-out in Grimsby are celebrating another year of success after more than 50 people took to their cardboard boxes on a cold January night to raise funds for homeless charities.
YMCA Humber’s Sleep Easy event returned to the North East Lincolnshire shopping centre’s multi-storey car park for the third, marking the sixth time that the fundraiser has taken place in the area.
The aim of the night is for fundraisers to register and make a cardboard shelter in which they spend 12 hours to raise awareness of youth homelessness. They also gain sponsorship from friends, family and colleagues to raise vital funds for homeless charities in North East Lincolnshire.
Tony Bramley is Chief Executive of Shoreline Housing Partnership in Grimsby and he was taking part in Sleep Easy for the fifth time.
He said: “We do it to support the YMCA and raise money. There is nothing worse than being young and homeless.”
“Last year, we raised about £2,000 and it is an enjoyable thing to do, even if it is an unpleasant experience. We can go home the next day, but in real life for those who don’t have that choice it must be really tough. We want to try to help people out of that position.
“It’s physically tough and not to be underestimated but is only a small price to pay.”
Alan Burley is YMCA Humber’s Funding and Volunteer Coordinator and he spoke about the support the charity provides to homeless young people in the region.
He added: “It has been another fantastic event.
“All the money we raise will be spent in Grimsby and Cleethorpes supporting the charities which help homeless people.
“The YMCA has 98 people every night at the Peaks Lane hostel, The Foyer and the Community House.
“We try to support them to change the circumstances which brought them to us and make sure they have enough to eat and help young people into training.
“There are many reasons why they come to us and we are here to help. That is why the supporters are here until 6am.
“It is about raising awareness of the plight of homeless people.”
Jonathan Byrne is YMCA Humber’s Communications Coordinator has been involved with the event since its 2011 inception.
He said: “This is the sixth year that YMCA has held a Sleep Easy event in Grimsby but the support of the local community to help us raise money for homeless charities and raise awareness of youth homelessness remains as committed as ever.
“We had over 50 people taking part in our third Sleep Easy at Freshney Place Shopping Centre multi-storey car park and it was great to see such a wide range of people taking to their cardboard boxes for the night.
“There were familiar faces, new participants, those returning to the event after some time away, bankers, teachers, young, old and everywhere in between – it really is overwhelming to us as a charity to see how many people come out to support the campaign.
The campaign has raised £6,000 so far, with donations still coming in. Anyone still looking to support the event can visit www.sleep-easy.co.uk for information on how to donate.
YMCA Humber would like to thank Freshney Place for all their support in hosting the event, Costa Coffee in Grimsby for their donation of hot drinks and the Rock Foundation for their donation of food.