Scouts from 65th Madeley recently spent 12 hours sleeping rough to raise awareness about homelessness.
This article was in the Sentinel and can also be read here –
MORE than 20 youngsters braved almost freezing temperatures to raise awareness about homelessness.
The team, from the 1st Madeley Scouts group, spent 12 hours sleeping in cardboard boxes outside The Madeley Centre at the weekend.
The sponsored challenge – which started at 9pm on Friday and ended at 9am on Saturday – helped to raise hundreds of pounds for homeless charities The Railway Children and Shelter.
Scout Troop Leader Bob Booth, said: “We deliberately set this challenge in January because we knew it would be cold.
“In fact, we were hoping it was going to be colder than it was or that it would snow, so the Scouts really knew what kind of conditions homeless people have to cope in.
“It was cold enough, though. A few of them lost a bit of sleep.”
The Group were allowed to wear warm clothes and bring sleeping bags if they wished. However, a lot of them chose to sleep inside their cardboard box.
Mr Booth added: “The main reason we did this was to raise awareness about the issues faced by homeless people.
“After this, a lot of them have realised the problems people who sleep on the streets face.
“Many people see homeless people and automatically think they are drunks and have only themselves to blame for the position they are in.
“But a lot of people don’t know the circumstances, or what has gone on for them to end up there.”
Scouts were given hot soup at the beginning of their challenge and enjoyed sausage sandwiches in the morning to help warm them back up.
Sarah Price and Megan Giannasi took part in the challenge.
Twelve-year-old Sarah, from May Bank, said: “It was really cold and I wouldn’t like to do it again. But it was good to have the experience of being homeless.
“And after spending a night in a cardboard box, I am glad we have been able to raise some money to help people in these situations.”
Megan, aged 13, from Tunstall, added: “A lot of people turn a blind eye to homelessness.
“It is not something people talk about a lot because they don’t know much about it, so it was good to experience it for ourselves for a night. We were allowed to wear gloves, hats and bring hot water bottles. We were still really cold, but homeless people don’t have those things so it must be even worse for them.”