YMCA Norfolk held their annual Sleep Easy fundraising event on Friday 10 March, where more than 40 supporters joined hundreds of people across the country in sleeping anywhere but their bed to raise awareness of the thousands of young people made homeless each year.
Participants joined a team from Ashton Legal – who sponsored the event, as well as Karen Vincent, chair of Norfolk County Council, and braved the cold for one night – sleeping in carboard boxes in the YMCA Community Hub car park on Aylsham Road, Norwich.
Sleep Easy participant, Fiona Stuart – who is also the Chair of YMCA Norfolk and a partner at Ashton’s Legal, said:
“It was an absolute pleasure to share the Sleep Easy 2023 experience with so many like-minded people, coming together to raise awareness around youth homelessness.
“A night outside in a cardboard box, in -5 temperatures, really brought home the reality that so many of our youth face in this day and age.
“I would really encourage others to join YMCA Norfolk in the future and take part in Sleep Easy – collaborating with the charity to raise vital funds to those most in need.”
Sleep Easy is one of the biggest fundraising events of the year, challenging people to experience homelessness for one night by camping out in unconventional places. All monies raised from the evening go towards delivering much-needed support for homeless young people every day in Norfolk.
John Lee, Chief Executive of YMCA Norfolk, also spent the night in a cardboard box in aid of the cause:
“It was a really cold night with temperatures reaching below freezing, however it has also been extremely rewarding for everyone who took part. It was amazing to see so many people come together to raise money and support young people in Norfolk.
“We’re extremeley pleased to announce that we reached our fundraising goal of £10,000. The money will go towards bed spaces for homeless and vulnerable young people, offering them the chance to speak to trusted YMCA Norfolk professionals about reaching their life goals and aspirations.
“I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who donated to the campaign, and we are extremely grateful to all of our participants who braved the cold and made Sleep Easy 2023 such an inspirational experience.”
To show your support to YMCA Norfolk’s Sleep Easy 2023 campaign, please donate here.