21 January 2019

YMCA Exeter is calling on local residents to come together and sleep rough for one night in March to support local, homeless young people.  We are one of several YMCAs across the country that have joined forces to raise awareness of youth homelessness during the national YMCA Sleep Easy week, running from Friday 8th to Friday 15th March.

The week will see donors sleep out for one night all over England to raise awareness of the hundreds of young people who sleep rough every year and raise funds to help YMCA Exeter continue to support residents and young people in their services.

While there is recognition from the public that homelessness is going up, new research from YMCA has found that just one in four young people who are homeless (26%) believe the public care about youth homelessness.

When thinking about themselves and their personal situation, even fewer young people who are homeless believe the public are concerned. Less than one in five homeless young people (19%) believe the public care about their situation.

YMCA Exeter are hoping that this event will act as a way of showing young people in our community who are homeless that the public do care about them and that they are trying to tackle the problem of homelessness by raising vital funds.

Gareth Sorsby, YMCA Exeter Joint Chief Executive, said: “We’re delighted to be hosting our Sleep Easy event at Barnfield Crescent on Saturday 9th March, as part of the national YMCA Sleep Easy Week. YMCAs across the country are holding Sleep Easy events at the same time to raise much-needed awareness of the plight of rough sleeping among young people.

“We know from our experience over the past several 30 years of providing accommodation that without the support we offer, many more young people would be sleeping on the streets and have less options and less chance of realising their potential.

“We are calling on the local community, old and young, to sign up to our Sleep Easy event to help us support young people in our services today and into the future. One night out can make a lifetime of difference.”

Local people interested in taking part in our Sleep Easy can find out more by contacting our events team on 01392 410530 opt. 4 or visiting www.sleepeasyexeter.org.uk/ .

To make a donation to the campaign please visit www.justgiving.com/exeterymca.