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25 August 2021

Author Deborah Klee is taking on this year's Sleep Out for the first time. In this guest blog, originally published on Deborah's website, she shares some of her motivations for taking part. 

How you can help one person get off the streets and find shelter

By Deborah Klee

Author Deborah Klee writes for Glass Door about Sleep OutThe dedication in my novel Just Bea reads:

Dedicated to those who are or have experience of being homeless. You matter.

This is heartfelt. I was inspired to write Just Bea after looking into the faces of young men and women who I passed on the streets of London. I started talking to them and discovered that everyone has a story.

Nobody wants to sleep on a street. On the 1st October I am going to do just that.

I am joining people all over the UK who will be spending one night sleeping rough to raise awareness of homelessness and to support Glass Door's lifesaving work. 

How can you sleep feeling so vulnerable and exposed?

I first heard about the Sleep Out in 2019. I thought it meant I would just unroll a sleeping bag on any London street as though I were homeless. Even then, I was contemplating the challenge. However, I knew my loved ones would be anxious and did not want to put them through that.

If I had just slept out on my own, I know I would have been terrified. How could you sleep feeling so vulnerable and exposed? And yet that is exactly what so many people have to do.

It wasn’t until early 2020 that I met a woman who had participated in the Sleep Out. She explained that it was an organised event and the participants slept in a supervised area. With that reassurance I was ready to sign up for the 2020 Sleep Out. Of course, that did not happen because of the pandemic. So now, I can finally take part.

It is more important than ever to raise funds to tackle homelessness as more people are likely to find themselves in this situation through loss of income as a result of the pandemic.

I would encourage you to all take part if you can. Give up your bed for one night and help someone else find a route out of homelessness.

You can follow Deborah's fundraising journey by visiting her fundraising page

Want to get involved? Sign up to our Sleep Out event. We have limited spaces on Duke of York Square, or you can take part from a location of your choosing.

Sign up