Connection is Medicine
“Connection is medicine.” Powerful words from one of the sleepers, who chose to spend the night on the street with his friend to help raise awareness and funds for youth. He felt grateful for the companionship. He said that it would have been a very scary experience to be out there on his own. Many youth face this fear on a daily basis.
For the second year in a row, Sleep Out: Champions Edition was a virtual event. However, our sleepers still came together, while remaining separate, because all youth deserve a safe place to sleep, especially during this time when housing is healthcare.
Last night, dedicated professionals slept out together, virtually, in solidarity with young people facing homelessness, to raise critical funds for our mental health and addition programs. Donations were matched by the Stow Family. We are extremely grateful for their support.
Youth shared their personal experiences about homelessness and how Covenant House Vancouver supported them on their journeys.
“I remember walking in [to Covenant House] and I just choked up and couldn’t communicate what I needed, and I just started crying. When I walked in, I was greeted with a warm smile and they asked me how I was doing, and I felt for once that, wow, I can finally feel at peace and I finally feel like I’m surrounded by people who want to support me, and help me, and encourage me to live life happily. It was a very life changing experience.” Said one of the youth who shared their story.
The morning reflection provided sleepers with an opportunity to share their experiences. One sleeper shared, “I participated a few years ago, when we could sleep out in the back alley and I found that last night to be a lot different, being alone. I think it was more realistic of what the youth that we’re trying to support are experiencing—to be on your own, and the vulnerability of that was a lot scarier than sleeping with all of our fellow fundraisers, and having you guys look over us all night. That was eye opening.”
A huge thank you to our sleepers, and their supporters, for their ongoing commitment to helping youth build a brighter future!