Hucknall Guides’ Night In A Box raises awareness of homelessness

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GIRL GUIDES from Hucknall experienced a sleepover with a difference recently to highlight the plight of the homeless.

Girls from the 4TH HUCKNALL pack joined hundreds of other members from across the district for the event, which was staged in conjunction with homelessness charity Framework.

The girls all brought cardboard boxes with them, which became their homes for the night, as they braved the elements at Wollaton Park to highlight the heartbreaking cause.

“Facilities were basic, entertainment was low-key and all non-essential belongings were left at home, so this was a real contrast to our usual jamboree-style camps,” said County Commissioner Kate Royse.

“While the mood was far from sombre, the evening encouraged the girls to think about the problems of homelessness and I think everyone gained a better understanding of how people — especially teenagers and young people — manage without a place to call home.”

The event was dubbed Night in a Box and was part of the People Like Me programme developed by Girlguiding Nottinghamshire with Framework.

Members of the Framework team joined the girls on the night, which also marked their Ten Days of Action 2012.

During the night, girls from age seven upwards queued for a simple supper of soup and a bread roll before warming up in front of a campfire for a sing-along.

They then took to their boxes for the night and tried to get comfortable in a ‘sleeping rough’ style.

Girls at the event from 4th Hucknall Guides included Harriet Bird, 14 and Joanna Morley, 15.

As part of the People Like Me project, the girls went on a walk round Hucknall to see places where homeless people might have to spend the night, and young leaders headed a discussion about whether they would like to sleep there, and whether they could really live on their own.

“We’ve been having fun, yet we all know it’s for a really worthy cause,” said Harriet.

Framework chief executive Andrew Redfern was delighted with the success of the event.

He declared: “Every one of the girls who took part in this event should be hugely proud of their achievement.

“Their determination to help those less fortunate than themselves is a credit to them and to everyone involved with Girlguiding Nottinghamshire.

“This has been by far the largest single fundraising event that any organisation has organised on our behalf and we are hugely grateful to all the determined volunteers who helped to make it happen.”

Working with Framework is part of an initiative which links in with Girlguiding Nottinghamshire’s desire to work within the larger community.

Enquiries from other organisations or individuals are welcome. Contact Kate Royse on 0115 9877220 or secretary@girlguidingnottinghamshire.org.uk.

n OUR PHOTO shows Hucknall Guides Harriet and Joanna during the outdoors Night In A Box