Each March, business and community leaders come together to spend the night outside overnight in solidarity with the many clients that we serve who may be homeless or at risk of homelessness.
Jessie Willetts (center, green jacket), brand advisor at Dealer.com, shares her experience of Sleeping Out below.
Why do you Sleep Out?
It such a simple thing for me to be able to sleep out in “discomfort” for one night, so that some of our local youth has access to many amazing services to help them live the life they deserve.
What was it like your first year?
My first year was a little scary, but once I was downstairs in the church basement hearing from a Spectrum participant all of that quickly dissipated. I knew from the moment that they started talking that I would do this for as many years as I am able. Such a worthy cause.
What’s the hardest part of the event for you?
I’m lucky in that I’m usually able to sleep. However, the next day is TOUGH! But to know that this is the normal life for some kids that live this day in and day out? Worth it every time.
Are there any meaningful moments from your years of Sleeping Out?
Mark is such a wonderful mentor for these kids, as well as the participants of the sleepout. He genuinely cares so much about everyone associated with the program and it shows in every interaction he has. I love watching him be proud of those that have the bravery to stand up and share their story. He is a true inspiration.