LEEK United is supporting a special ‘sleepover’ at Stoke City’s Britannia Stadium to help highlight the plight of North Staffordshire’s homeless community.
The club wants 100 fans to bed down for the night in freezing conditions on the floor of a draughty concourse building at the stadium next February.
‘The Big Sleep Out’ is aimed at raising awareness and funds for Brighter Futures, a charity backed by the Stoke City Community Trust, of which Leek United is an associate community partner.
Brighter Futures provides assistance to people in North Staffordshire whose life chances – including their health, employability and social skills – have been affected by deprivation, low incomes and, in many cases, homelessness.
Stoke City star Glenn Whelan took time out from training to help officially launch The Big Sleep Out at the Britannia Stadium, together with Clare Beardmore, Leek United’s Marketing and Products Manager, and Richard Humphrey, of the His Church Charity.
“It’s a sad fact of life that so many people are homeless, but the Big Sleep Out will help raise awareness of their plight and, of course, raise much-needed funds for Brighter Futures.
“It will undoubtedly be a cold and testing night for those who take part, but they deserve great credit for going to such lengths to help a great cause.”
Stoke City want 100 fans to join the Big Sleep Out, by raising a minimum of £100 each. The Community Trust will provide each of them with a cardboard mat to sleep on in a concourse in the Britannia Stadium’s Q-railing Stand; hot soup and drinks will also be provided for them throughout the night, with a hot bap at breakfast time.
Clare Beardmore added:
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“The local community is at the heart of all that we do at Leek United, and Brighter Futures’ work makes a tremendous, positive impact in that community.”
“We are delighted to be an associate community partner of the Stoke City Community Trust and to be supporting the Big Sleep Out – there may even be a member or two of our own staff amongst those taking part…”