In our latest post, Sophie Lison, a second-year undergraduate studying BSc Business Management (Marketing), explains how she and her classmates organised a sleep-in to raise money and awareness for Llamau, Wales’ leading homelessness charity for young people and vulnerable women.
We were aware that sleep-ins have had mixed responses and even some criticism from some.
People argue that they’re insensitive and fail to acknowledge the real experiences of homeless people.
Homelessness not houselessness
But what we wanted to show with our event is that you don’t have to be on the streets to be suffering.
Our emphasis was on homelessness, not houselessness. And there are so many examples of this type of experience in society today. Sofa surfing, sublets, squatting and those without a supportive family unit are just some examples.
Llamau’s work seeks to engage with homeless people no matter what their level experience might be. They want to change futures for the better with Gender specific support, domestic abuse refuges, safe accommodation, mental health support, to end the cycle of abuse for young women and homeless young people in and around Cardiff.
Their initiatives mean that people at risk can access support in their homes to maintain their tenancies and avoid becoming homeless. And, for people who are already homeless, their facilities provide opportunities to learn life and work skills to move on to employment and overcome homelessness.
Netflix and shelter-building
It was the second time that Cardiff Business School had held a sleep-in, so we were able to get donations from local businesses in and around Cardiff for food and drinks for the event.
Students and staff tucked into Domino’s pizza and fresh burritos before doing group activities like shelter-building which got pretty competitive.
We also held a raffle with prizes donated by the event sponsors.
Dean Professor Rachel Ashworth said a few words and we had a set of five songs from the Cardiff University Show Choir, a society from the Students’ Union that competes annually in a nationally recognised competition.
The evening came to a close with hot chocolates all around and snuggling up for the night in front of Netflix.
In the morning we got up at 6am to appreciate how people at risk of homelessness would go to school or work and continue their normal days despite their circumstances.
Personal success stories
I really enjoyed learning more about Llamau as an organisation while organising the sleep-in. And it was a great way to apply the things I’ve learned from my Marketing Society module to a real-life charity and worthy cause.
I also had the chance to attend their Annual Impact Event where I witnessed, first-hand, the impact our events and the public have on many peoples lives across the capital city.
It was very moving to hear the personal success stories of the individuals supported by Llamau.
If anyone’s thinking about organising a sleep-in of their own, I’d really recommend it. It was a fun event to get staff and students together and a great way to end my second-year studies at Cardiff Business School.
Llamau offers support and advice on how to run a successful event, including suggested activities to run, sponsorship forms, fundraising tips and decorations. Contact them, here.
And, in case you missed it, Cardiff Business School recently held a Breakfast Briefing on Homelessness in Cardiff, where Frances Beecher, Llamau’s Chief Executive, and Dr Peter Mackie, from the University’s School of Geography and Planning, outlined ways to tackle homelessness.
You can find out more about that, here.
Sophie Lison is a second-year undergraduate studying BSc Business Management (Marketing) at Cardiff Business School.
Thanks to her efforts and those of her classmates, the sleep-in raised £100 for Llamau. You can follow Llamau’s life-changing work on Twitter at #ChangingFutures.