'World's biggest sleep-out' raises £3m for the homeless
More than 10,000 people have staged the “world’s biggest sleep-out” in a fundraiser to tackle homelessness.
The “Sleep in the Park” event was held in Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Dundee and Glasgow and raised over £3m for the Scottish homeless charity Social Bite.
It was the second year of the mass sleep-out after the first one in Edinburgh last year, which raised more than £4m.
Participants contributed at least £100 each to take part. Before bedding down on plastic sheeting, concerts were laid on at the different venues by acts including Lulu, KT Tunstall and Amy McDonald.
Tunstall told the crowd in Dundee’s Slessor Gardens on Saturday night: “We see it every day – people who haven’t had the opportunity they hoped they’d have, and they’ve ended up in a really difficult situation.
“One thing I always hear is that homeless people feel like people can’t see them.
“It’s fantastic that we’re showing solidarity tonight and we do see them, and we do want to help. Thank you for being involved. I’m so proud to be part of Social Bite tonight.”
Organisers hailed the event as the world’s biggest sleep-out.
Social Bite co-founder Josh Littlejohn MBE said: “Tonight was a night when people from all walks of life came together across Scotland – to stick up for the most vulnerable people among us.
“This is a night that we collectively gave a voice to the people who have never had one – and the event will have the very direct impact of helping 830 people off the streets in Scotland.
“There are 11,000 homeless households in Scotland. When I think about all of the amazing different people, sleeping out throughout Scotland tonight, the one thing that strikes me is that homelessness isn’t insurmountable.
“Scotland is a small enough country, a compassionate enough country and a collaborative enough country, where nobody has to be homeless here.”