We asked the Executive Sleep Out participants to reflect on their experience sleeping outside overnight a few weeks ago. Even though the weather is warmer now, it is clear that these community and business leaders made a difference by sleeping out, and with your help, they raised over $260,000 (and counting!) for our youth.
Here’s what they wanted to share with you:
“This event – anchored by Spectrum clients and staff – opened my eyes to the daily, even hourly, challenges and risks facing some of Vermont’s most vulnerable young people. Vermont Gas supports Spectrum because it makes a huge difference to these Vermonters, who learn skills, make commitments about their own lives, and move forward into a brighter future. It is urgent, important, challenging work, happening in our community right now.”
— Ned Farquhar, Vermont Gas Vice President of Communications and Sleep Out participant
“It was absolutely a humbling and wonderful experience for me. This was my first time Sleeping Out and I honestly didn’t know what to expect. I am so glad that I did it because it was eye opening, informative, and even inspiring. The work you all do is amazing and I love that I got to help contribute to keeping that going for young homeless people in Vermont.”
“I went into this [to give back.] Spectrum has attempted to help my nephew and he is just not ready. I wanted to give back to help replenish resources used on him. No child should ever have to spend a single night on the streets, and laying on the ground in the wind made that even more important to me. Surrounded by 108 people and I was lonely . . . a very strange sensation.”
“I felt pretty abandoned. Even surrounded by all the people there . . . my body ached and [there were] the 40 mph winds. I kept hearing sirens, cars, people walking by laughing and yelling. I didn’t realize how much I take for granted every day until I was outside all night, trying to get a mere hour of sleep, laying on top of a piece of cardboard. Working the next day was a haze and a struggle.”
“It was more meaningful than I expected . . . In fact, the fundraising process was actually inspiring and energizing. The sleep Out experience was surprisingly emotional for me because I was overwhelmed with thoughts about how much support we all need as teenagers and young adults. Some get lucky, others don’t. Blessedly, in this community support is be available to any young person in need who is willing to do the work along with Spectrum. Now that the Sleep Out has happened, I feel like the privilege was all mine to participate in such a meaningful cause.” — Grace Amao Ciffo, Dealer.com team member
Over 2,800 donors and participants came together to make the Sleep Out happen this year. You are part of a movement, and we are so grateful. Thank you.