Warwick pupils sleep rough for homelessness charity

Pupils at Warwick School taking part in a 'sleep-out' to raise funds for homelessness charity Emmaus.
Pupils at Warwick School taking part in a 'sleep-out' to raise funds for homelessness charity Emmaus.

Eleven and 12-year-old boys from Warwick School had a small taste of the life of a homeless person for a night to raise funds for a homelessness charity.

One hundred year seven pupils at the school spent a night sleeping in cardboard boxes outdoors as part of the school’s fundraising efforts for Emmaus, which aims to help homeless people find permanent living arrangements.

Not only did the boys have to sleep in cardboard shelters, but they also first had to build them, using plastic bags and tape to help make them as waterproof as possible.

And then to help gear up for the night, the youngsters took part in a variety of physical and mental challenges, including a bungee run, dodge ball game, a quiz and team building exercises. Then a chapel service was held, which included a talk given by a representative from Emmaus.

The boys were then served soup by their headteacher Gus Lock at 11.30pm, before they attempted to get some sleep.

School spokeswoman Liz Callan said: “Fortunately the rain held off while the make-shift shelters were being constructed and held off until 4am in the morning when there was a light shower, enabling the cardboard village to be cleared away before heavy rain set.

“Not only was the event planned to raise funds for a good cause, but was also designed for the year 7 boys to appreciate a little of what it means to be homeless.”

The pupils raised more than £1,500 for the Warwickshire branch of the charity.

Emmaus was founded in Paris in 1949 and was brought to the UK 40 years later. It has now branches across the country. To find out more about the organisation, visit www.emmaus.org.uk