A RECORD number of participants took part in the Grimsby leg of Sleep Easy in 2014, as the YMCA’s flagship fundraising event bedded down at its new home in the multi-storey car park of Freshney Place Shopping Centre.
In total 80 rough sleepers took to their cardboard boxes on the night of 31st January to raise money for homeless charities in North East Lincolnshire.
It is the fourth year Sleep Easy has taken place in the town but the first time it has been held at Freshney Place and organisers are hoping that the increased take-up is reflected in the event’s final fundraising total.
Jonathan Byrne, Communications Coordinator for YMCA Humber said:
“We are overwhelmed at the number of participants taking part, especially the first time sign-ups.
“It just goes to show that the people of North East Lincolnshire consider youth homelessness a problem that needs solving and the funds raised through Sleep Easy help YMCA Humber and our partners, Harbour Place and CARE, alleviate that problem.”
Jonathan also had plenty of praise for Freshney Place and the help the team at the Grimsby-based shopping centre had put in to assist in organising the event.
He continued: “The Freshney Place team have been nothing short of first class throughout and that has shown in the feedback we have received from participants on Sleep Easy.
“It is our first time in the centre and they have been very supportive, from securing food and drink donations for participants to promoting the event to shoppers within the centre.”
And local businesses rallied around the event with a number of donations that enabled participants to have a more comfortable experience during their night under the stars.
“We would like to thank a number of local businesses who helped with non-monetary donations for Sleep Easy,” said Jonathan.
“Costa Coffee provided hot drinks for participants on arrival and food on the night was provided by Grimsby Institute, Sidewalk Café and Domino’s Pizza.
“Matt Bloomer. Sportsmaker at Grimsby Institute, was a real plus, entertaining our rough sleepers with some wonderful warm-up exercises.
“ASDA Grimsby provided the prizes for the shelter competition and we received donations of tape for the shelters from Office Friends.
“In the morning, Darren from Yes Chef café arrived with 70 breakfast buns for our participants – so an extra big thank you to him.”
It is still not too late to donate to Sleep Easy 2014, details can be found at www.sleepeasy.gcymca.com. For more information on the work of YMCA Humber, please call (01472) 693388 or visit www.ymca-humber.com.