Depaul’s first national Sleepout was a huge success, raising £55,000 to help people facing homelessness and attracting praise in a House of Lords speech by a Peer who slept out.

Seventy sleepers slept outside in the courtyard at London’s Somerset House, on Wednesday, 11 October, to raise the profile of homelessness and funds for Depaul International and Depaul UK.

They included professionals from Bridges Fund Management, Rinkit, Deloitte and King’s College Hospital, and Conservative MP Will Quince and Lib Dem Peers Baroness Grender and Baroness Suttie.

The sleepers listened to a thought-provoking speech by Depaul Group CEO Mark McGreevy and were entertained by superb performances by two singers, Kristina, a Depaul client, and former X Factor contestant, Anelisa Lamola.

The following day, Baroness Grender told the House of Lords: “The Depaul Sleepout is a powerful event to change perceptions about people who experience, or are at risk of, homelessness. It is, as their [Group] CEO Mark McGreevy says, ‘a humbling, valuable and memorable experience’.”

Depaul International sleeper Jason Eades, Senior Partnerships Manager, said: “Sleeping out, even in the secure confines of Somerset House, is never an easy thing to do in October. . . I was so proud of all our sleepers for giving up their beds for the night to raise funds to help the homeless in the UK and overseas, where we support more than 21,000 people each year.”

Joe Howes, Depaul UK’s Executive Director of Fundraising & Business Development, said: “I would like to wholeheartedly thank everyone involved. This was the first Depaul Sleepout and it was resounding success. The atmosphere, speeches and entertainment on the night were brilliant and to end up raising £55,000 for Depaul was a major achievement and a very solid foundation to build on for future years.”

To register your interest in next year’s Depaul Sleepout, prospective sleepers should email Jason Eades.