YMCA Northumberland’s Sleep Easy Event took place on Friday to Saturday (15 & 16 March) to raise awareness of those who are, or at risk of becoming, homeless in this area.

Over 20 people took park through sleeping rough, in the grounds of Woodhorn Museum, from 7pm on the Friday evening till 7am on Saturday.

Participants included Wansbeck MP Mr Ian Lavery, the High Sheriff of Northumberland Mr Michael Orde and Ashington Town Councillor Matthew Cuthbert. The Civic Head of Ashington, Cllr. Marjorie Chambers, also went along to support those taking part (pictured).

As well as providing an opportunity for people to come together to raise awareness of homelessness those that took part also raised vital funds to support YMCA Northumberland’s preventative work with vulnerable young people in this area. 

Across the UK, and locally, homelessness services are experiencing significant increases in demand for the support they offer. Rough sleeping is on the rise with there being an increase of 15% from 2016 to 2017, and an increase of 169% from 2010.

In the previous YMCA Northumberland Sleep Easy event over £4,000 was raised. YMCA Northumberland’s Chief Executive, Rob Cox said ‘We would like to thank all those who took part on what was a bitterly cold and wet night and to Woodhorn Museum for providing the venue and their staff’s support. We are on target to significantly break the amount raised on previous events and we would like to thank everyone for their kind support’.  

For more information visit www.ymcanorthumberland.org.uk/sleep-easy

The YMCA have been active in Northumberland for over 130 years, empowering young people to help them reach their true potential. The YMCA’s building is on North View, in Ashington, behind Station Road (NE63 9XQ). For more information on the organisation and their work visit www.ymcanorthumberland.org.uk