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The Big Crawley Sleepout raises £14,000 for charities

80 people chose to sleep outside on the night of Thursday 21 March to support two local charities – Crawley Open House and YMCA Crawley.



The mass sponsored sleepout event aims to raise vital funds for homeless and vulnerable people across Crawley, and saw local people, businesses and councillors come together to spend a night sleeping under the stars. To date, the event has raised almost £14,000. 

West Sussex County Council is cutting funding to the housing related support budget over the next few years, from £6.3m to £2.3m by 2020/21, putting increasing pressure on local charities. Crawley Open House and YMCA Crawley have a long history in the town and called on the local community to help protect services in the area. Funds raised at the event will be split jointly between the organisations, with money raised helping some of the county’s most disadvantaged people.

Charlie Arratoon, Director of Crawley Open House, says:

“We are all aware that homelessness is increasing, with more people on the streets and more ‘hidden homeless’ who are insecurely housed and not sure where they will be night after night. An event like this does not replicate homelessness but does bring sharply into focus the luxuries many of us take for granted.”  

Sharon Rawcliffe, Senior Project Worker at YMCA Crawley, adds:

“The money raised by the Big Crawley Sleepout will make a huge difference to the vulnerable and homeless people we work with. We are so thankful for those who slept out for a night – we have an amazing community here in Crawley. 

Among those sleeping out on-the-night was Simone, who commented:

“Crawley Sleepout was a big eye opener for me. I didn’t realise how painful it would be trying to sleep on a layer of cardboard, and homeless people do it night after night. I think the YMCA and Crawley Open House do amazing work.”

Donations are still welcome at


All Crawley Co-op food stores set up as food banks for local charity

The new initiative, setup by Paul Taylor-Burr, an ambassador pioneer for Co-op and Ian WIlkins from Open House was started on the 3rd August.



In surely a first for any town an initiative will see every Co-op across Crawley now be able to take food donations.

Food bins have been placed in each of the Co-ops where shoppers are able to leave donations for Crawley Open House.

Currently collections will be taking place every Friday but if demand grows then more frequent ones will be organised.

Paul Taylor-Burr said:

“We are looking for donations of non perishable items such as Tuna, Rice Pudding, Cereal, Tea bags, Tinned Custard, Tinned Meat, Baked Beans.

The Open house do such magnificent work and the more we can show our belief and support for what they do the better.”

There are Co-ops stores in Langley Green, Pound Hill, Tilgate, Bewbush, Maidenbower and Ifield.

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