Scarborough business leaders urged to 'brave the cold' at charity's only North Yorkshire sleepout

CEO Sleepout has raised millions of pounds to help tackle the UK's spiralling homelessness problem, and has asked business leaders from across North Yorkshire to grab a bag and brave the elements at the charity's sole fundraiser in the region later this month.
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Business leaders from Scarborough are being urged to spend a night in the cold to raise money at a major charity's only fundraising event in North Yorkshire this year.

CEO Sleepout will host the annual event at York’s LNER Community Stadium on Thursday April 18.

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The event aims to raise tens of thousands of pounds for causes working to battle poverty and homelessness throughout the region.

CEO Sleepout will stage their only event in North Yorkshire later this monthCEO Sleepout will stage their only event in North Yorkshire later this month
CEO Sleepout will stage their only event in North Yorkshire later this month

It comes as new figures, sourced exclusively by the charity, reveal that around 15 people sleep rough on the streets of York each night - with an astonishing 1,500 people waiting for a property.

Now the charity's CEO, Bianca Robinson, has urged business leaders from across the borough of Scarborough to sign up for the sleepout - claiming money raised at the event will be a "lifeline" to for hundreds of people.

"Too many people here are struggling to survive,” said Bianca.

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"The reality is that the cost-of-living crisis is making life increasingly hard for everyone – especially our most vulnerable.

“The Government vowed to end rough sleeping by 2024, yet nationally, there are record rates of homelessness and that figure is getting worse by the year.

“That’s why we are urging the Scarborough business community to pull together and brave the York CEO Sleepout this year.

"A few hours in the cold will help support locals who wake up each day wondering if they’ll have a bed - or even a roof - over their heads that night.”

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Figures made public by York Council show that 1,505 people are currently on the authority’s waiting list for a home.

The council’s last annual rough sleeper count found that at least 15 people were sleeping rough, while nationally, the number of rough sleepers was up a quarter in 2023.

According to data previously published by another charity, Shelter, over 40 per cent of those classed as homeless on any given night in York were children.

As such, the York CEO Sleepout aims to raise money for four causes trying to stem the tide locally: York City FC Foundation, Carecent, The Hygiene Bank and SASH.

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One participant this year is Audrie Woodhouse. A voice, presentation and development coach from North Yorkshire, she’s raised thousands at previous sleepouts – experiences that have left her “humbled”.

“The current climate sadly means nobody is immune from being made homeless, and often the only difference is the support people have around them,” said Audrie.

“That’s why I’d urge everyone who can to volunteer and take part in this year’s sleepout.

“It isn’t easy – there was a point when I woke at 3am and all you could see were people staring into nothing. The concrete, cement and iron railings were very unwelcoming, and it dawned on me that this must be the reality for people every night.

“So, it truly is a humbling experience, and you leave with a greater appreciation for what people endure, and a greater desire to do more to help.”