Mass Sleep Out for PR Scotland.
Over 50 spent the night on the streets of Edinburgh’s Festival Sqaure in the event which was organised by The Rock Trust in conjunction with organisations across the country including Centrepoint, The Amber Foundation, St. Basils, Llamau, Keyhouse and St. Edmunds who deal with some of the most vulnerable young people in our society.
Fundraisers were required to brave a cold night on the streets from 7pm till 7am as part of the unique event to raise awareness of homeless and disadvantaged young people and funds raised will go toward providing vital services for young people in Edinburgh and Thr Lothians.
Kathleen O’Mahony, Fundraising and Events Co-ordinator for The Rock Trust, said: “Thank you to everyone who took part last night, it was a fantastic turnout and despite the cold weather a very enjoyable evening.
“In Scotland authorities received 20,000 homless applications from young people aged between 16 and 24. The Rock Trust needs to raise awareness of this fact so that we can continue to provide housing and support services to young people.
“This includes providing those in danger of becoming homeless, and those who have been homeless, with effective support networks, access to information and access to education and job opportunities.”
The Rock Trust works in Edinburgh and the Lothians with young people between the ages of 16- 25 who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.
They advise, educate and support young people enabling them to build the personal skills and resources required to make a positive and healthy transition to adulthood, while avoiding or moving on from homelessness.
Among the many people who took part last night were SNP MSP Marco Biagi and companies such as Taylor Wimpey, RBS, DWF Biggart Baillie, as well as many others.
Marco Biagi, SNP MSP for Edinburgh Central, said: “The Rock Trust have been providing an invaluable service to Edinburgh’s homeless people for over 20 years. I am proud to help them highlight the continuing adversity faced by young people who find themselves living on the street.
“There is no way to replicate all of the risks and dangers of homelessness, but everyone braving the cold this week is showing their commitment to keeping this issue at the forefront of Scotland’s attention.
“The Scottish Government has set ambitious targets that by the end of 2012 all unintentionally homeless people will be entitled to settled accommodation. Indeed, most recent statistics for the period April to June 2012 show a decline of 13% in applications for homelessness assistance compared to the same period in the previous year.”
The Rock Trust has been organising Sleep Out events for 10 years, and during that time they have amassed over £150,000.