July 2017: For Immediate Release
5th Annual Sleep Out to Raise Money for London Homeless
On Friday 6 October 2017 Glass Door, the London homeless charity, will hold its fifth annual Sleep Out in Duke of York Square, Chelsea. Registration is now open and Glass Door is hoping to recruit 400 people to brave, potentially wet and windy weather, to spend a night sleeping on the pavement to raise money for homeless shelters in London.
This year’s Sleep Out aims to fund a network of shelters in three London boroughs: Kensington & Chelsea, Hammersmith & Fulham and Wandsworth. Currently, 22 churches of different denominations work with Glass Door to provide homeless men and women with a safe and dry place to sleep in winter, whilst many other religious institutions provide financial support and volunteer teams.
By providing shelter, showers, food and support in finding work and housing in church halls for homeless people with nowhere else to go, Glass Door helps individuals break the ‘cycle of homelessness’. The need for emergency shelter shows no sign of abating as Government benefits have been cut, and property prices in London remain prohibitively high. Rough sleeping in England has risen dramatically since 2010 – up 16% last year and 30% the year before.
Background to Sleep Out
Since the inception in 2012 of Sleep Out almost 900 volunteers have spent a night sleeping outside and they have raised close to £600,000. Twelve individuals have slept out in all four years, and at least 70 people have slept out more than once.
Last year over 300 volunteers slept out and raised over £180,000. This money helped Glass Door expand their network of winter shelters, providing an average of 87 people every night with a place to sleep and giving a total of 420 individuals the chance to get off the streets for as long as they needed to. Also caseworkers helped 160 homeless people into more permanent housing and helped 98 find work.
Volunteers at Sleep Out in Duke of York Square
Glass Door also hopes the event will raise awareness of homelessness. Those volunteers who take part experience a small taste of some of the difficulties that so many homeless people in London have to deal with: the freezing cold, the vulnerability, and the difficulty of carrying on your day with little sleep. This gives people a better understanding of the importance of readily available emergency accommodation and support.
Steven Platts, Glass Door’s Chief Operating Officer, says Sleep Out has been key in helping Glass Door support more people off the street – “No one should have to sleep on the streets of London. The Sleep Out helps bring that goal closer to a reality.”
This coming winter, plans are in place to increase the number of individuals who receive shelter every night to about 100.
Volunteer to Sleep Out For One Night
Glass Door aims to recruit 400 volunteers who will give up their beds on the night of 6 October 2017. There is no registration fee nor fundraising minimum, but the charity encourages participants to aim to raise around £500 in sponsorship.
Registration is now open at www.glassdoor.org.uk
Alternatively email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 351 4948.
The Cadogan Estate, is sponsoring the event and will once again provide the use of Duke of York Square, security and portable lavatories whilst Partridges (www.partridges.co.uk), the family-run grocer, will provide a hot breakfast for the volunteers who Sleep Out.