On Friday October 4th, 162 people rose to the challenge of sleeping out for 12 hours in a bid to raise essential funds and awareness for those facing homelessness in Galway. The Galway Simon Sleep Out took place across five City & County locations, and saw people of all ages and backgrounds taking part. Galway Simon Community has just announced that funds raised for the event are currently at €70,000, with this figure continuing to rise each day.

Amy Lavelle of Galway Simon commented on how she felt humbled by the support shown by both participants and the general public on the night.

“We are absolutely blown away by the level of support shown by each host community for this year’s Sleep Out. We’re particularly grateful to our local team leaders for rallying this support and for helping to showcase the true sense of community that we have here in Galway.

The time and energy that each and every participant devoted to their fundraising efforts in the lead up to the event is overwhelming and the sense of camaraderie and sheer kindness on the night was just heart-warming.” Amy said.

Karen Golden, CEO of Galway Simon Community paid a visit to each location on the night.

She commented on the importance of this fundraising event, at a time when more people than ever before are in need of their services.

“The most recent figures released by the Department of Housing show that there are now 551 people in emergency accommodation in the West of Ireland, including 200 children. Ensuring that we can continue to fund our Homelessness Prevention Services is vital. Those who slept out on October 4th have not only helped to raise crucial funds to extend these services, they have also created an increased level of awareness around the current homelessness crisis we are facing’’. Karen said.

Galway Simon Community would like to extend a huge thank you to all the businesses, organisations and schools that got behind the Sleep Out this year. They would also like to say a special thank you to the team in Galway Bay FM for sponsoring the event again in 2019.

The charity is still receiving donations and sponsorship from the event and the total funds raised will be announced in the coming weeks.