Oxfordshire Homeless Movement (OHM) has raised over £75,000 and counting for those in need through its CEO Sleepout event.
The CEO Sleepout, which took place on 12 October, saw Oxfordshire business owners, CEOs, Directors and Partners come together to sleep outdoors in the rain to raise money for services that support people experiencing homelessness.
Organisers of this year’s event were aiming to make this year bigger and better than last year and have done so by a mile, hitting their fundraising target of £75,000. There’s still time to donate and help OHM beat the target even further – fundraising pages close in less than six weeks.
The donations to OHM from the event help fund several projects, supporting the people of Oxfordshire experiencing homelessness.
Yvonne Pinner, Project Director at Oxfordshire Homeless Movement, said: “The CEO Sleepout last year was relatively successful, but this year it’s been above and beyond what we expected.
“Last year, we had about 17 people sleeping out, whereas this year we’ve had over 40 sleeping out in the elements – and heavy rain too – everyone really braved the conditions.
“We know this one night is nothing but a tiny glimpse of what homeless people experience every day, but we’re glad to be able to spread awareness about such an important cause.
“We’re delighted that this year’s event has been a success. Participants have gone over and above their £1,000 donation goal, meaning we’ve exceeded our fundraising target of £75,000.
“The great thing about the money we’ll have raised through this event is that it’ll go directly to frontline projects – every penny that we raise from this event will go to help someone in Oxfordshire so we really do appreciate every contribution, particularly as we approach the winter months.”
Angela Unsworth MBE, Domestic Bursar and Fellow at Oxford University College, has been supporting OHM’s work and providing employment to those sleeping out and leaving the criminal justice system for years.
She said: “I participated in the CEO Sleepout last year, and it made a difference, but we think that we need to make a difference every year, every day, and I’m here really because, fundamentally, it’s the right thing to do.
“We’ve welcomed people from all sorts of backgrounds – from the business community, the university, the colleges. There are a lot of people that have pulled together this year to raise money and awareness, and despite the rain, everyone maintained high spirits.
“We need to remember that for us this is just one night. It’s not necessarily easy – and that’s the point – but for the people we’re trying to support, this is their reality every night. It costs us very little in the grand scheme of things to support them.”
Visit the Oxfordshire Homeless Movement website to find out more about the Oxfordshire Homeless Movement and donate to the cause.