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People and businesses wanted to join second Newark Sleep Out

Posted onPosted on 12th Oct
People and businesses wanted to join second Newark Sleep Out

Newark and Sherwood residents, businesses and organisations have been invited to take part in the second annual Newark Sleep Out.

Launched by Newark and Sherwood District Council’s Housing Options team during Homelessness Awareness Week, and sponsored by local estate agents, Buttercross Estates, Newark Sleep Out involves local people spending the night outside in the elements, to experience something of what it is like to be homeless.

For the first time Newark Sleep Out, which is due to take place overnight on Friday, 12th March next year, will involve participant’s bedding down for the night in their own gardens because of expected Covid-19 restrictions.

To enable the event to go ahead, organisers will encourage sleepers to build their ‘bashes’ in their private, secure gardens and tune into a range of information about homelessness on the interne via Zoom on the night.

Daniel Otton, managing director at Buttercross Estates, said: “As a letting agent, we see far too many cases of homelessness and I know it’s just the tip of the iceberg. We are sponsoring Newark Sleep Out 2021 to help raise funds for the local charities that support those affected by homelessness.

“The charities involved, now more than ever, need our support to continue the great work that they do and we would urge you get involved with the sleep out by signing up, or supporting those that have.”

Charities due to benefit from funds raised on the night include the Winter Night Shelter, Newark Women’s Refuge, Newark Emmaus Trust and mental health and wellbeing charity, Shawmind.

Nicola Burley, chief executive of Newark Emmaus Trust, said: “We are very grateful to be one of the recipient charities of this challenging and vital fundraising event. I shall be out on the night sharing information about the work we do with young, homeless people in Newark.”

In 2019, 30 local people took part in the first Newark Sleep Out, but organisers are calling for more people to put themselves forward for the March event, to not only gain an insight into what homelessness can feel like, but also to beat the previous fundraising total.

Su Hallam, charity manager at Shawmind, added: “Mental health can be both a cause as well as a consequence of homelessness. I’m hopeful that by putting themselves in the same position, participants will gain a greater understanding and empathy for the homeless community.”

Matt Elsey, Church Leader, Newark Salvation Army, said: “Sleeping out for one night is a great way to understand and support the homeless in our town, albeit from the safety of our gardens. I would encourage you to get involved and experience what it is like on a cold night on the streets.”

Anyone interested in taking part in the nighttime event can register his or her place on the Newark and Sherwood District Council website.