Downpours don't dampen spirits at Sleep Out

19 September 2016

Canterbury Rotary Sleep Out

Torrential rain kept most of us indoors this weekend. At Rotary Club of Canterbury Sunrise's sleep out, cardboard boxes were the only protection from the elements.

The awful weather didn’t deter 40 business leaders, academics and others from sleeping in tents made of cardboard (‘waterproofed’ with bubble wrap) to raise money for homeless charities Porchlight and Catching Lives.

They spent Saturday night in the Canterbury Cathedral grounds. Kent County Cricket Club CEO Jamie Clifford, Bishop of Dover Trevor Wilmot, MP Julian Brazier and Porchlight chief executive Mike Barrett were among those who slept out for sponsorship.

Sleep outs can give a sense of what it’s like for those who have no choice but to sleep rough every day of the week. The Rotary Club sleep out is expected to make thousands of pounds for people who are homeless and vulnerable.

The number of rough sleepers in Canterbury has doubled over the past year, and with so many homeless people staying hidden from view, this is likely to be just the tip of the iceberg. Porchlight has a rough sleeper service which works with people living on the streets, addressing issues they are facing and helping them get into accommodation.