Local businesswoman Lisa Dyson will be lending her support to three Leeds charities aiming to tackle homelessness in a unique way next month, by bedding down in a skip for the Leeds Big Sleep In on Friday 5th February.
Lisa, Director of Bill Dyson Skip Hire & Waste Management Ltd, is a long-time supporter of the Leeds Big Sleep event, having taken part in the sponsored sleepout each year since it was launched in partnership between Leeds Rhinos Foundation, St Gemma’s Hospice and St George’s Crypt back in 2017.
Over the years, Lisa has joined many other local business leaders, Leeds residents and volunteers on the terraces of Emerald Headingley Stadium to help raise awareness of homelessness and raise vital funds for the three charities who all work with vulnerable people throughout the city.
With participants this year asked to find somewhere unusual and uncomfortable around the home to complete the virtual ‘sleep in,’ Lisa has decided to fully embrace the change of surroundings by taking up the challenge of sleeping outside in one of her companies’ Maxi Skips.
Explaining the decision, Lisa said: “When I was told we had to choose somewhere different to give up a night of comfort, I thought it’s pretty obvious where I needed to sleep and that’s in a skip. It’s definitely going to be cold sleeping in there, but it’s nothing compared to what those people with no choice but to sleep rough night after night have to go through.
“It has been a strange year for everyone, and although it was disappointing that the Leeds Big Sleep was originally postponed back in November it’s great that we can now come together virtually and do something alternative.
“The Leeds Big Sleep has been hugely successful and it’s great to see how far it’s come. In the first year there were just a few of us sleeping out on the terraces in the cold and it has grown year on year which I hope will continue with this year’s virtual event.
“I’m a firm supporter of all three charities and as a business owner in Leeds, I want to do all I can to give back to this wonderful city and help three charities who do so much amazing work to support and protect vulnerable people in our community.
Thanking Lisa for her continued support of the Leeds Big Sleep, Gail Chapman, Head of Fundraising at St Gemma’s Hospice, commented: “It is thanks to the generosity of people like Lisa and the general public that all three charities have been able to continue working tirelessly during these last few challenging months. It is disappointing that we were unable to hold The Leeds Big Sleep event in the usual way, but we hope families, friends and colleagues will all join us virtually at home for our Big Sleep In, helping to raise vital funds so we can continue our support of local vulnerable people.”
Gareth Cook, Leeds Rhinos Foundation’s Head of Community and Engagement, said: “Lisa has been a wonderful ambassador for the Leeds Big Sleep and has raised a significant amount of sponsorship along with awareness, which has resulted in more participants taking part. All three charities are all extremely grateful for Lisa’s support and wish her good luck with this unique challenge.”
Cheryl Harrington, Head of Fundraising at St George’s Crypt, added: “This pandemic has rewritten the plans for so many charity fundraising events in 2020 and now into 2021, but we want to keep up the momentum of what has become a strong partnership for the three Leeds charities and our corporate supporters; Dysons Skips, Evershed Sutherland, Devonshires and Symingtons, amongst others.”
The Leeds Big Sleep is a collaborative fundraising event organised by Leeds Rhinos Foundation, St Gemma’s Hospice and St George’s Crypt which involves people giving up a night of comfort to raise much-needed money for vulnerable communities in Leeds and highlight the plight of homeless people across the city.
This year’s event will take place virtually, with a whole host of virtual entertainment to be broadcast throughout the evening for participants to enjoy.
To register your place for the 2021 Leeds Big Sleep In on Friday 5th February, visit http://bit.ly/LeedsBigSleepIn. Please note that a £5 registration fee applies.
For more information about this year’s Leeds Big Sleep In, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.