Borough officials ‘sleeping rough’ to help raise awareness of homeless youth

editorial image

Public health officials will be ‘sleeping rough’ to help raise awareness of youth homelessness.

Representatives from Bedford Borough Council’s public health team will be taking part in YMCA Bedfordshire’s ‘SleepEasy’ event, between 7pm – 7am, on Friday, February 28, in Bedford.

YMCA SleepEasy challenges people to think about the issues affecting young homeless people by asking individuals to give up one night to sleep out in their local community.

Cllr Colleen Atkins, Executive member for Adult Services and Community Wellbeing, at the borough council, said: “I am extremely proud of our public health team for showing such dedication in order to raise awareness of the important issue of youth homelessness and to also use this creative way to raise money for YMCA Bedfordshire.

“Having previously participated in this event myself, I know how tough it is to take part, but it is worthwhile if it can help young people not having to sleep rough themselves.”

In the past two years, more than 1,600 people have braved sub-zero temperatures raising a staggering £250,000 to help young people across the UK.

Cllr Atkins added: “Whilst it is an uncomfortable night for those participating, it is not a direct parallel to actually sleeping rough, however, it definitely helps to better understand the hardship that a number of our community face on a daily basis, and it generates much-needed funds for this worthy cause.”

For further information, contact Dele Johnson, at YMCA Bedfordshire, on 01234 220 516/ 07508 807440 or email