Students and staff from Westholme endured a night sleeping outdoors raising £8,000 for two charities that support the homeless

A team of 55 Year 8 students, 13 Sixth Formers and 13 members of staff from Westholme recently took on the almighty challenge of sleeping outside from 7pm to 7am the following morning, in a bid to raise money for two fantastic charities Nightsafe and Invisible Cities that support the homeless.

The previous day, all of Year 8 heard from Danny and Alice, two representatives from Invisible Cities about their Manchester tours and what life was like for Danny when he was homeless for over four years. Keen to dispel stereotypes, Danny explained how he had served in the Armed Forces and had a successful business but had struggled with depression which eventually led him to leave his home and family. Honest and inspiring, Danny gave the students lots of opportunity to ask questions and gave tips about the sleep out that many would face the next day.

Despite the sudden drop in temperature, students arrived armed with sleeping bags, layers and determination to take on their challenge. The first job was for teams to pick their pitches and build shelters for the evening out of the cardboard collected on site. A talent show and a quiz kept spirits high throughout the evening with a quick bout of aerobics to warm students up before getting into their sleeping bags to try and get comfortable for the evening. Lights went off at midnight and the real challenge began.

Emerging from their shelters in the morning, everyone was delighted to see hot chocolates and a warm breakfast of bacon and sausage sandwiches – they certainly will have appreciated the warmth and comfort of their own beds on Sunday evening!

Westholme is immensely proud to announce that the event broke all previous records for fundraising and the final total was £8000 which will be shared between Nightsafe and Invisible Cities. A cheque for £6400 was collected on behalf of Nightsafe by Diane Page and Tedd Walmsley.

The number of homeless people in the North West has increased by 11 per cent this year and current estimates suggest that one in 200 people are currently living without accommodation in the UK. Westholme students showed real grit and determination to raise as much money as possible for people who have to face that situation daily.

If you would like to support them and make a donation, the school has set up the following fundraising page:



Tedd Walmsley

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