Sharp staff in Centrepoint sleeping bags

Sharp Centres CSR on Homeless Youth

19 staff from Sharp Business Systems (SBSUK) PLC have raised over £5,250 for Centrepoint, a registered charity that supports homeless youth.

Held at several locations around the country in November, staff took part in Centrepoint’s annual Sleep Outs in Barnsley, Manchester, and London, which saw them swap their beds for a sleeping bag for the night, providing valuable insight into the challenges faced by those sleeping rough.

Paul Leach, Sales Director at SBSUK talks about his experience at the London Sleep Out: “I think we all underestimated how cold it would be! It wasn’t coming from wind or a draft but actually up from the ground, which when you think about people sleeping on the cold streets really hammered it home.”

Event organiser Centrepoint has been a leading homeless youth charity for over 45 years, providing homes and support services to young people in London, Manchester, Yorkshire, and the North East.

Elia Giovanni, SBSUK’s Head of Marketing attended the Manchester Sleep Out, he adds: “These events are a great way of raising awareness in businesses and getting employees to raise money, which can pay for counselling sessions, healthy living workshops, or functional skills qualifications. It really is invaluable in helping these young people take back control of their lives.” 

After joining the Sleep Out in Barnsley, OneStop Analyst at SBSUK Samantha Steele comments: “The event was so challenging, just the lack of sleep alone makes it so hard to function the next day, and we only experienced a fraction of what homeless people go through every day.”

The informative and engaging events provided full evenings of entertainment, music, and interactive ways of learning about Centrepoint and homelessness.  

Stuart Skyes, Managing Director at SBSUK concludes: “A major part of Sharp’s CSR strategy for 2018 is ‘enriching young lives’, so as a charity that supports homeless young people we just had to get involved. I was at the Manchester event and it was a real eye opener.”

Almost 5,000 people sleep rough every night in the UK, and tragically, the average age that homeless people die is just 47 years old. 

Participants also received an evening meal, breakfast, and hot drinks, with a pay bar available on the day with all profits going to Centrepoint. 

Sharp staff that took part: Samantha Steele and Tabby Larder (Barnsley), Paul Leach, James Hall, Nik Modi, Nick Smith, and Steve Rigelsford (London), Stuart Sykes, Elia Giovanni, Philippa Gillian, Alex Hunter, Gary Risley, Dom Jones, Paul Kelly, Adrienne Topping, Isabelle Eddy, Matthew Saunders, and Hannah Wilkinson (Manchester).

Find out more about Centrepoint here: