Lisa Sleeps Out Because Youth Matter!

In the bustling streets of Metro Vancouver, a harsh reality shadows the city’s glittering skyline: between 500 to 1,000 young people face each night without a safe place to sleep. These youth, each with their own story, dreams, and aspirations, find hope in the caring embrace of Covenant House Vancouver.

Sleep Out: Champions Edition isn’t just an event—it’s a movement fuelled by compassion and advocacy. It brings together a diverse community of professionals, organizations, influencers, and individuals who are willing to forgo the comfort of their beds for one night. Their sacrifice ensures that the young people at Covenant House have a secure place to rest, and offers a beacon of hope in the darkness of homelessness.

Meet Lisa Campardo

By participating in Sleep Out, we stand in solidarity with those facing homelessness and raise awareness about the growing number of youth who experience this plight. This year marks a significant milestone as passionate advocates from the community have come together to form the Sleep Out Cabinet. This collective aims to leverage their resources to inspire others to join the movement, and to amplify its impact and reach. 

Today, we have the privilege of introducing Lisa Campardo, who is part of Team RBC, and is part of the Sleep Out Cabinet. Lisa shares her personal experiences, motivations, and insights into the transformative power of Sleep Out. 

How did you find out about Sleep Out?

I first became aware when RBC Financial Planner, Kevin Takahashi first became involved in the Sleep Out: Executive Edition, and I have since watch others, including our Regional President, Matin Thibodeau lean in to support this wonderful cause. 

Why did you join Sleep Out?

For as far back as I can remember, I have always had a fear of being homeless. I’m not exactly sure what prompted that fear, but I suspect it formed from my routine commute to work through the Downtown Eastside, where I would see all of these homeless individuals on the street and wondered what brought them there. It truly takes only one triggering event to send a ripple effect and turn the life of someone upside down and spiralling out of control.

Can you share a memory from a Sleep Out? It could be something you learned, an epiphany, a heart-warming moment, the Sleep Out experience and how that impacted you, or something that stuck with you from the panel session that included youth sharing their experiences.

I remember the morning after the Sleep Out and how awful I felt, physically. I was chilled to the bone, I was sore from sleeping on the concrete, I was exhausted because of the lack of sleep, and I just felt a little defeated, despite knowing the impact my experience and fundraising would have for Covenant House. Ultimately, it took a day of reflection for me to digest the gravity of what I experienced. No individual, particularly young people, should be subjected to these conditions. Having a warm space to be able to feel safe and reenergize ourselves each night is a basic human right. And while this was a hard lesson to learn, and one that I perhaps took for granted, it wasn’t until I had the opportunity to experience this discomfort myself, that I truly understood what it felt like to be homeless.

Why did you join the Sleep Out Cabinet?

Last year, I played a small role in helping to assemble a team of individuals to sign up for the event. This year, I thought that joining the Cabinet would enable me to contribute at a deeper level, leverage the platform to create broader awareness and, hopefully, enable me to inspire more individuals to learn about my dedication to Sleep Out and donate to my fundraising goal.

Why is the Sleep Out event important?

I think our communities sometimes overlook, or are blind to, the bodies living the in shadows. We know longer see them because it’s the norm, not the exception. I feel that by participating and sharing my experiences with my family, colleagues, and on social media, will help me draw attention to what is taking place and, ultimately, inspire others to get involved and contribute to this important cause.

Why are organizations, like Covenant House, important to have in the community?

I am an ally of the 2SLGBTQAI+ community and I know there are numerous youth who take to the streets because they are distanced from their families, either by their own choice or simply because their families have discarded them. It’s tragic. Covenant House provides a safe haven for youth from all backgrounds to find a place where they can reclaim their dignity and set themselves up on a path to a brighter future. One where they feel valued and that their contribution matters and that they matter!

Why should other business leaders get involved with this cause?

Business leaders have a responsibility to steward the next generation of leaders and visionaries. And this next chapter of leaders can come from all facets of life. We cannot discount the contribution of those who have been marginalized. It’s our responsibility to ensure all youth have an equal opportunity for success, and the first step in that is self-love, self-care, and feeling valued, which is what Covenant House strives to do.

Is there anything else that you’d like to say to, or share with, the people who are reading these posts?

I would encourage others to learn more about the impact of this organization and the reach that these raised dollars have on the youth that Covenant House supports. It’s truly a transformational experience.

An exciting update!

We are thrilled to announce that Vancouver International Airport (YVR), an incredible supporter of CHV is supporting Sleep Out in a big way. They’ve coordinated a team of 10 individuals who will advocate, fundraise, and participate in Sleep Out alongside us. Furthermore, YVR has committed to match all funds donated between February 15–29, up to $50,000. This generous support demonstrates the collective effort needed to address youth homelessness and underscores the impact that we can make when we come together as a community.

Whether you support Lisa and Team RBC, or Sleep Out: Champions Edition, your donations will be matched by YVR.

We would also like to thank BC Place for lighting up in support of Sleep Out: Champions Edition. Look for the Covenant House Blue glow emanating from BC Place tonight.

Thank you for your support of vulnerable youth in the community. 🙏