Friday, 3 July 2015

A Big Night Out With The Big Issue

Finally, the warm weather is here, and we can cheerfully spend more time outdoors. Get on with some gardening, perhaps. Have a barbecue. Maybe, if we're feeling adventurous, we could spend a night out under the stars.
Of course, for hundreds of homeless people across the UK, there's no other option. Rain or shine, winter or summer, they spend most of their time without adequate shelter. Our friends at The Big Issue want this to change, and they want you to help.
By joining them in a sleepover.
The Big Sleep Out, an annual event that's been taking place since 2012, gives you the chance to experience a night under the arches of a railway bridge in Vauxhall. It's not going to be a party (well, it might turn into one, even though it's a dry event) but it will give you a very particular insight into the problems every homeless person faces when they want to get their heads down for the night. The Big Issue puts it like this...
Whatever the weather on the day, this atmospheric venue will be cold, dark and different and there will be rumblings of trains above while we sleep. Sleeping out in the tunnel won’t be comfortable, so we definitely recommend that you bring some warm clothes and a sleeping bag to wrap up in and some cardboard to sleep on!
There'll be chat and some live music (see, I said it could turn into a party) before the lights go out. Previous attendees of the event have described the experience as "haunting" and "eye-opening". A safe, warm and comfortable place to sleep feels like such a simple, commonplace thing. Taking that away, even for one night, can really give you a different perspective on homelessness.
The Big Sleep Out is taking place on August 7th. To sign up, or to find out more, go to The Big Issue's Big Sleep Out page.
And don't let the bedbugs bite.


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