Friday, 30 September 2016

The Big Sleep 2016 - Hastings

If you're on Hastings seafront tonight and notice a lot of folks in cardboard boxes, don't be alarmed! It's not a hobo convention, but a fantastic initiative to raise funds and awareness of homelessness within our communities: The Big Sleep. I learned about the Hastings event through our friend, Steve Royston, who is bravely taking part. If you know and haven't yet sponsored Steve, you can find out how to swiftly redeem yourself by clicking this link.

The Big Sleep team are building a cardboard city on Hastings Stade and the whole event will run from 7.30pm until 7am. Entertainment is free and open to all, sleepers and visitors, between 8pm and 10pm so do pop along to show your support before heading home to your cosy bed. Comedian Steve Furst will be hosting and headlining the music will be award-winning blues man King Size Slim and The Rufus Stone Band. The sleepout itself is a ticketed event which commences at 10pm and is only for those who have already registered. I understand that on-the-night registration is not possible.

Proceeds from The Big Sleep will go to Seaview, a worthy and unfortunately vitally needed local charity. For over 30 years Seaview has been supporting some of the most vulnerable people in Hastings and St Leonards, most of whom experience problems with their accommodation. They work with more than 1,000 people a year, and in the last year alone served more than 6,500 hot, affordable meals. Seaview finds up to 30 people sleeping rough each week on their outreach sessions and, in the last year, worked with 197 homeless people, including supporting 147 rough sleepers, aged from 18 to 60 plus.

I want to wish all the best to everybody sleeping out tonight! Fingers crossed that it doesn't rain.

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