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Co-operative Bank sponsors STAY:UP to support homeless young people

16 September 2020

We’re delighted to announce that The Co-operative Bank will be a lead sponsor for Centrepoint’s new flagship fundraising event, STAY:UP

The mass participation event, which for 2020 replaces the charity’s long-running annual Sleep Out, asks participants to go just one night without sleep to raise awareness of both the challenge to homeless young people of having to go without sleep when they have nowhere safe to rest their head, but also to raise much needed funds to be used to help homeless young people across the UK.

Centrepoint estimates that over 100,000 young people in the UK were homeless, or at risk of homelessness, in 2018/19. Now, in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, Centrepoint research has revealed that 78% of local councils across England have seen an increase in homelessness* and there has been a 50% increase in calls to the Centrepoint Helpline from young people who are facing homelessness.

In addition to this, figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that over the last quarter (May-July 2020), there has been a significant fall in the number of young people in employment. The number of people aged 16 to 24 years in employment decreased by 156,000 to 3.63 million, and this includes a record fall of 146,000 for those aged 18 to 24 years.

All donations raised by STAY:UP participants will go directly towards supporting homeless young people with safe and stable accommodation, the skills needed to live independently, support with their physical and mental health and access to training and education.

The new event challenges participants to stay up all night – between 8 am and 8 pm – on the night of 8 October. Participants can walk, game, bake or simply try to stay awake during a virtual content stream, that includes a performance from The Vamps, a cooking demo with Ching He Huang and much more.

Alongside participants’ own activity the charity will be sharing pictures, videos and insights throughout the night on Centrepoint’s Instagram profile, @centrepointuk.

Branch and office staff from The Co-operative Bank will be taking on physical challenges as well as staying up to help the charity to reach its £500,000 target for the event. Together with their customers, The Co-operative Bank has raised £1.5 million to support homeless young people since the start of their partnership in 2017.

Darrell Evans, Managing Director, Retail Banking at The Co-operative Bank said: “The issue of youth homelessness in the UK was at crisis point even before the pandemic, and with the additional consequences of lockdown it’s clear that the impact on young people who were already struggling is significant and we may see the effects of that for a long time to come.

“It’s vital that we take as much action as we can now to try to counteract this. Some of these vulnerable young people aren’t always visible in our communities but they desperately need support services and opportunities for them to get education and training that might help keep them safe and have a better life in the future. We are committed to supporting this event and many of us at The Co-operative Bank will be taking part to raise much needed funds whilst also highlighting the struggles of homeless young people in the UK and what we can do to make a difference.”

Lucy Coleman, Centrepoint’s Senior Corporate Development Manager, said: “We’re immensely grateful for the ongoing support from The Co-operative Bank. Coronavirus has perhaps been the biggest challenge Centrepoint has ever faced, and we are so grateful for the support we have received that allows us to continue to help thousands of homeless young people across the UK.

“Moving to a virtual event is an example of just one way we have adapted our partnership delivery to ensure we can continue to support vulnerable young people in our services. All donations will allow us to continue to deliver the most effective, practical, and emotional support to homeless young people who need us now more than ever.”

To find out more about Centrepoint’s STAY:UP event and get involved, please visit: https://stayup.centrepoint.org.uk/

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*ONS stats released 15.09.2020: https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/uklabourmarket/september2020

About Centrepoint

  • Centrepoint is the leading charity for homeless young people aged 16-25
  • Centrepoint supports over 15,000 homeless young people a year.
  • It provides accommodation-based and floating support services in London, Yorkshire, Manchester and the North East. It also runs the Centrepoint Helpline.
  • The Freephone Centrepoint Helpline is for any young person aged 16-25 who is worried about homelessness. It is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. The Centrepoint Helpline number is: 0808 800 0661.

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