A team of four Network Marketer’s took to the streets overnight on Thursday 29th September for Simon on the Street’s annual #sleepwithsimon sleep out – their flagship fundraising event, that provides a unique opportunity to gain understanding into what it's like to sleep rough. Along with over 100 others, we set up camp by the Royal Armouries in Leeds, arriving with cardboard, a sleeping bag and layers of clothes galore to see us through the night.
On arrival we signed ourselves in, picked up or wrist bands and t-shirts and found a spot in the venue to set up for the night. We were then called together to listen to the team at Simon on the Streets speak about the work they do across the Yorkshire region, helping vulnerable people who have fallen off the mainstream grid and are living on the streets with no support in their lives. This was followed by a video about a woman called Pixie who used to live on the streets and how, through her interactions with Simon on the Streets, has been supported in turning her life around. Her story was incredibly moving and brought tears to our eyes, but it was great to hear how her life is now and also about the work she now herself does with the charity.
Next up we were treated to music from a choir, whose name I cannot for the life of me remember, but who sang a number of songs to entertain everyone. Once that was all done and dusted it was bed time, with everyone tucking themselves into their sleep bags and chatting until they drifted off to sleep.
Apart from a spot of rain at about 3am, we were so lucky with the weather. People started stirring and heading off from about 4.30/5am but most did not get up until after 6am. It was quite the experience and one we were happy to have participated in, it made us even happier that our team managed to raise over £650 for the event!
A massive congratulations and well done to everyone at the charity for setting up and hosting the event, and thank you to everyone who sponsored us. Would we do it again? Yes, definitely!