Victoria Gate Casino opened its doors to a rough sleeper charity last night as part a year-long partnership.
The casino in Leeds city centre was one of eight organisations to name Simon on the Streets as its charity of the year when 2018 began.
And yesterday it hosted the relaunch of the charity’s Five for Five scheme, which invites businesses to pledge to raise at least £500 each year for five years.
Business representatives joined the team for food and drink laid on by the casino and had the chance to find out more about the charity’s frontline work with rough sleepers in Leeds, Bradford and Huddersfield.
Simon on the Streets general manager Gordon Laing said: “I think people recognise the fact we have a problem of homelessness and rough sleeping, but until we speak to them I don’t think they realise why people are in that situation and why they might not access accommodation. A lot of it is about mental health.”
The hope is that some of those who attended will now sign up as corporate partners.
“We don’t get local authority or government money – it’s all from our sponsors and fundraising,” Gordon said.
“It’s about trying to get it across to people that we can’t do it without their support.”
Those already signed up to Five for Five are First Direct Arena, Leeds Dock, Eyzon Consulting, Yorkshire Payments and S Harrison Developments.
Meanwhile, tickets are now on sale for the fourth Rough Diamond Ball on May 10.
The evening of food, drink, entertainment and dancing will be held at the Crowne Plaza Leeds.
See the Simon on the Streets website for more details.