Contributed by Norfolk Chamber of Commerce
18/09/2019 - The Benjamin Foundation
Local charity, The Benjamin Foundation is calling for support to help end youth homelessness as they prepare to host their annual fundraising event in central Norwich for the fifth consecutive year.
Sleep Out invites people to spend one night outside so others don’t have to. This year, The Benjamin Foundation are bringing the event back to Norwich City Football Club on Thursday 14th November, and are inviting individuals and businesses to register and raise money by spending one night sleeping in the car park.
The Benjamin Foundation is tackling the problem of youth homelessness by providing a home and support to over 100 local vulnerable young adults each night. Now in their 25th year, the charity has accommodation centres across Norfolk from Norwich, King’s Lynn, North Walsham, Fakenham, Thetford to Great Yarmouth. They also support young people through a network of Hosts, who are trained and supported to look after a young person in the Hosts own home.
The result is that vulnerable young people throughout Norfolk, who have not had the best start in life, are provided with a safe place to live, stability and the opportunity to learn important life skills to help them move towards independence. This helps to prevent more young people ending up on the streets and stops the local homelessness problem growing.
Following a breakdown in family relationships, Harry found himself looking for somewhere to live.
“It wasn’t good, and I’ve had quite a lot of struggles.” Harry explains.
He was offered a place at one of the charity’s accommodation centres in Norfolk, which provided him with the support he needed to get his life back on track and he is now looking to the future:
“My Support Worker has taught me how to be better at saving money. He’s taught me quite a lot actually… My confidence has improved a lot since I‘ve been here. I know I wouldn’t be able to do it by myself; it makes me feel a lot better to know that there’s someone there.”
Norwich Sleep Out is an opportunity to increase awareness of youth homelessness in the region. In 2018, 146 individuals braved a cold November night, armed only with a sleeping bag and cardboard mat, to experience a taste of what it feels to be homeless and to raise money for the charity, which has helped to buy items such as bedding, kitchen essentials and clothing, as well as providing practical help like counselling and training courses to support the emotional wellbeing and future aspirations of young people to help them build a better future.
The Benjamin Foundation’s Marketing and Fundraising Manager, Chris Elliott says:
“We help people across Norfolk to deal with some of the challenges that life throws at them. Our work brings hope, opportunity, stability and independence to the people we support. The Benjamin Foundation celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, so we hope that more people than ever will get involved in Norwich Sleep Out at this year’s Premier League venue to raise money to shape better futures for vulnerable young people in Norfolk.”
The Benjamin Foundation is part of End Youth Homelessness, a UK-wide network of local charities that have joined forces to tackle youth homelessness together. It provides a national platform to raise awareness, share experience and generate voluntary income though Sleep Out, which in 2018 raised over £1.2million in 15 locations across the UK.
If you’re an individual or a business who would like to get involved with Norwich Sleep Out 2019 to help tackle local youth homelessness, sign up here: https://benjaminfoundation.co.uk/event/norwich-sleep-out/
For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07825 130003
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