Covenant House Sleep Out Rallies Young Professionals in Support of Homeless Youth
On March 22, over 100 young professionals in business, government, media and sports from New York and New Jersey will sleep out on the streets of New York City in solidarity with homeless youth.
“These young professionals have decided to stand with homeless youth and be their voice in a very unique and powerful way,” said Kevin Ryan, President of Covenant House. “They’ll sleep on the concrete outside our Covenant House shelter in solidarity with our kids. Many of the young professionals participating won’t be much older than the homeless kids inside our shelter that night. Together we’ll become a unified voice for the thousands of homeless young people being abused and beaten and forgotten on our streets.”
There are 2 million homeless kids in the United States in any given year, but they are largely invisible. “Homeless teenagers blend in, they couch-surf, they hide in the wide open,” said Ryan. “They’re running from violence and abuse. Or a parent died. Or poverty crushed their families. Or drug addiction scalded their homes and they have no one left to look out for them. The money and awareness raised during this Sleep Out will help us reach more homeless kids before the streets rob them of their dignity, their spirit, and their lives.”
"As a young professional I feel a closeness to the youth at Covenant House, young people who have the same dreams as all of us striving to succeed in New York,” said Diane Lillis, Chair of the Covenant House New York Associate Board. “What they have not had up until now is the family, friends and support that all young people need. I hope the Sleep Out will not only raise much-needed awareness and funds, it will also show the young people at Covenant House that they are not in this alone and that we care about what happens to them."
"The young adults Covenant House helps are just a few years younger than me,” said Ian Straughter, another young professional who works for CAP Solar in New Jersey. “For me, sleeping out is not only an offer of solidarity for the Covenant House mission, but also a way I can develop a tighter bond to the cause which all of us on the Young Professionals Program Board of New Jersey are drawn toward.”
The Sleep Out: Young Professional Edition in NYC will begin at 7 pm, at the Covenant House facility at 460 West 41st Street. You can view a list of current participants at the event website, www.YPSleepOut.org.