Over 3,000 Join Covenant House to Sleep Out in Solidarity with Youth Experiencing Homelessness
On November 18, in a powerful show of support and solidarity for youth experiencing homelessness, over 3,000 business leaders, celebrities, individuals and families from all walks of life stepped out of the comfort of their homes to sleep on the streets for one night, raising over $12.5 million for Covenant House programs.
Some slept out in-person at Covenant House locations across the U.S. and Canada. Others slept in their own backyards or apartment floors around the globe. Corporate teams from Cisco, Accenture, Morgan Stanley and Delta grew our Sleep Out movement to new heights.
“What an incredible night,” said Covenant House President & CEO Kevin Ryan. “Over 3,000 caring people made the decision to stand in solidarity with our amazing, resilient young people and made a life-changing difference. The awareness raised has already brought thousands more people into the fight to end youth homelessness. And the funds raised will be used not only to provide life-saving shelter this winter, but also provide educational support, and job opportunities, and long-term housing so that every young person at Covenant House can pursue the great promise of their lives.”
“This was my 11th consecutive Covenant House Sleep Out here in New York, and I have become even more passionate about this mission with each passing year,” said Brian Cashman, New York Yankees Senior Vice President & General Manager and Covenant House International Board Member. “I’ve seen it time and again – the effect Covenant House has on young people is literally life-altering, and I’m proud to support them any way I can.”
In Chicago, snow flurries fell and cold wind blew as more than 200 people slept either outside Covenant House or in their own backyards and basement floors. With support from teams from Accenture and Cisco over $500,000 was raised.
Another 200 people slept outside overnight in New Orleans. "It's all about being in support and solidarity with young people who face these challenges every day," said Covenant House executive director Rheneisha Robertson.
In Detroit, a team of Delta participants slept out at the airport, and in Toronto, over 70 participants braved the cold. “I’ve seen a lot of poverty in my life,” said participant Gus Stavropoulus. “I’ve had friends of mine living on the streets who are no longer with us. So when I heard about this initiative and found out there was a way I could help and do my little part, it really hit home.”
“Every night, over 2,000 young people sleep safely at Covenant House,” added Ryan. “In the past 12 months, in the midst of a pandemic, we have opened 8 new programs and 138 additional beds. But there is so much more to do as we walk with our young people on their individual journeys.”
National and local coverage:
The Sleep Out was covered widely by national and local media. The Weather Channel and GMA did national stories. Local stories included reports from Chicago, Vancouver, New Orleans, Michigan, Toronto, Missouri, and this one about CHI board member Brian Cashman and his Sleep Out in New York City.