It was a cold night for some big Vancouver names.
From athletes to musicians, to former TV stars, 64 people spent the night sleeping on a piece of cardboard with a sleeping bag to raise $200,000 for Covenant House.
Vancouver Whitecaps trainer Lageishon Mohandas admits one night won’t help those on the streets who really struggle.
“One night is not going to make a drastic change, but it’s an opportunity to start a discussion; it’s an opportunity for youth like us to get involved, and I think that we are the cornerstone of the future.”
Vancouver City Councillor Melissa DeGenova was also among those who spent the night.
“I can’t even imagine what it could have been like weeks ago when we had the snow in Vancouver, one of our coldest winters in Vancouver, to experience that without the proper clothing, and without the sleeping bag.”
Those who participated in the event slept outside for six-and-a-half hours in a back alley behind Covenant House.
“A week on the streets, the real way, with no blankets”
CKNW talked to some people who have been living on the streets for years to get a sense from some about how events like this make them feel.
27-year-old Megan Lockerbie has been living on the streets of Downtown Vancouver for seven years.
While she appreciates the effort from those who come out to support events like Sleep Out, she’s urging people to get a real taste of what it’s really like.
“A week on the streets, the real way with no blankets, no one to watch over, not safe, cold and wet in an alley by yourself at night.”
Jarold Burger has been homeless for 22 years, and says there’s plenty to worry about outside of just sleeping in the cold, like how they’d be able to make money.
“Just leave their ID’s and their bank cards at home, and find out if they can make some money, get something to eat, panhandle, sleep in parks, garages, underground or the alleys.”
Both Burger and Lockerbie say they’ve used the Covenant House in the past for support.