Leeds street kitchen volunteers to raise funds by sleeping rough for weekend

The Real Change street kitchen provides hot meals for homeless people in Leeds every Sunday evening.
The Real Change street kitchen provides hot meals for homeless people in Leeds every Sunday evening.

A founding member of one of the city’s street kitchens will get firsthand experience of life as a rough sleeper during a fundraiser this weekend.

Jason Nota, who helps to run the Real Change street kitchen, will give up all the creature comforts of home for 48 hours as he lives on the streets with fellow volunteer Jamie Licence.

It is a step up from the 24-hour sponsored challenge completed by Jason and others from the group in Leeds back in April.

And this time, they will be sleeping out in Halifax where they are not known to the homeless community.

“Everybody deserves to sleep in warmth and safety. It should be a given,” he said.

“I wanted to experience what it is like to be isolated and homeless in another environment properly. We’re going to step outside of our comfort zones.”

The pair will have nothing more than the clothes they are wearing and a sleeping bag, meaning they will have to rely on begging if they are to eat.

All sponsorship pledged during the sleep out will go towards running the weekly street kitchen, meaning real rough sleepers have somewhere to go for a hot meal and toiletries.

Jason said: “We’re not a charity. It’s just people helping people. We’re living in a world of plenty where more than enough is wasted, so why people are going without is beyond me.”

The street kitchen is held in City Square every Sunday night, 6pm-8pm.

Click here to help Jason and Jamie reach their £1,500 sponsorship target.

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