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Hundreds sleep rough in Winchester for charity
10:10am Sunday 22nd September 2013 in Winchester
HUNDREDS of Winchester residents slept rough this weekend to raise awareness for homeless charities.
Almost 200 people took part in the Big Sleep Out, organised by Trinity Winchester and Winchester Churches Nightshelter last Friday night (Sept 20).
They gathered on the green in Cathedral Close, building shelters out of cardboard or tucking up in their sleeping bags, raising money for both charities.
Jessica Wheale, fundraising manager at Trinity, said the event was very successful with some participants raising thousands of pounds.
She said: “Everyone enjoyed themselves and it was a great atmosphere. The big difference here is that we are all going back to a hot shower so we can get through it but we need to raise awareness for the people who do it every night and don’t have that option.”
Trinity trustee Peter North added: “I don’t think one can really know how it feels to be sleeping rough and even though doing it for one night like this gives some idea about it, it really makes you think about the realities of the situation.”
Peter Symonds College students Georgia Benton and Nina Jones took part for the first time and won a prize for best designed cardboard shelter.
Miss Jones, 16, from Southampton, said: “We both did a programme last year called the National Citizen Service and we helped out at the Trinity Centre through that, which is how we heard of this.
“We actually had quite a good night’s sleep and we were only woken up by one of the marshals telling us people were leaving.”
Miss Benton, also 16 and from Southampton, added: “This is something really worthwhile which people should get involved with because it raises money for a really good cause.”
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