Key information


  • 01603 886933/ 01603 886931 /01603 886932
  • The Benjamin Foundation,
    23-27 St Andrews Street
    NR2 4tp


What is Sleep Out Really Like?

Jodie and Gary took part in our 2017 Norwich Sleep Out. In these videos, they describe their experience:


Do Your Own Sleep Out



Our Sleep Out fundraising events take place each November in Norwich and Ipswich and you can see all the details here.These events are open to people aged 18 and over.

In addition we wanted to give people another way to learn about and support our homelessness work so we're offering everyone the chance to ‘Do Your Own Sleep Out'.   By doing this we want to make it easy for anyone to understand this important issue and take part in a way that suits them.  As with our main Sleep Out event doing your own event will not replicate the hardship faced by people who are street homeless.  However, we hope it will give you a better understanding of the issue and how The Benjamin Foundation is working to address it.  

What does 'Do your own Sleep Out' involve?

It's really flexible so it can be what you want it to be.  The main things we'd like you to do are:

  1.  Read the key facts

We've described homelessness and what our charity does to tackle the issue of youth homelessness in the Key Facts section below and there's also a copy here which you can print off. 

  1.  You Decide

If you want to ‘Do Your Own Sleep Out' you can decide when, where and who you do it with.  You don't need to do it on the same day as our events, any time in November or December is fine.  Likewise you choose where and who you do it with.  Here are a few ideas:

  • As a family you could Sleep Out in your garden for a couple of hours in the evening to understand what that feels like in the winter

  • If you're part of a group such as cubs, scouts, brownies you could Do Your Own Sleep Out together.  Inside or outside, for a few hours or all night, it's up to you. 

  • Maybe you can get some colleagues together and Sleep Out either in the workplace or outside, the choice is yours.

Please read Our Guidance notes below. 

3.  Keep In Touch

If you want to ‘Do Your Own Sleep Out' then please contact Chris Elliott by email ( or telephone (01603 886933). 

We'd love to see and share your photos too and you can do this in these ways:

Facebook    Search for The Benjamin Foundation

Twitter       @CharityTBF


On social media we are using the hashtag #TBFSleepOut

4.  Fundraising

If you'd like to make a donation or raise sponsorship by doing your own Sleep Out that's great but it's not a requirement. 

We have a sponsorship form here if you want to print it off. 

To make a donation then you have the following options:

  • Bank transfer to our account.  Sort code: 40-35-06  Account: 01370340 Please put Sleep Out on the reference.

  • Cheque payable to The Benjamin Foundation and send it to Chris Elliott,  The Benjamin Foundation, 27 St Andrews St, Norwich, NR2 4TP.

Our Guidance

  1. If you're sleeping outside wrap up with lots of layers and remember a waterproof layer too.

  2. Choose somewhere safe on your own property or where the landowner has agreed you can do it.

  3. Children should only do this with adults present.

  4. If you're sleeping on a hard surface like tarmac or paving then layers of cardboard keep out the cold. 

Key Facts

  1. The number of homeless young people in this country is unknown.  End Youth Homelessness estimates the figure to be 83,000 but the truth is nobody knows as there will be young people out there getting by without any support and unknown to any authorities.

  2. Young people can become homeless for lots of reasons.  Often this is down to things totally out of their control such as their family breaking up around them. 

  3. The Benjamin Foundation started supporting young homeless adults in North Walsham in 1997.  Our accommodation there for 15 young people has been full ever since – as one young person is ready to move on there's always someone else to take their place.

  4. As well as North Walsham we also have accommodation centres in Great Yarmouth, Kings Lynn, Aylsham, Norwich, Fakenham, Thetford, Ipswich and Stowmarket.

  5. Our charity helps the young adults aged 16-25 get their lives back on track.  Our aim is that after living with us for between 6 months and 2 years they are able to leave us as confident, independent young people. 

  6. We help the young people with their education, training and finding a job.  We also give them life skills such as budgeting money, shopping and cooking.  

  7. Our Heart and Home service is another way we help young homeless adults. The young people live in the homes of our network of hosts who we have recruited and trained.  It benefits young people that who benefit more from being in a homelike environment.  Our Heart and Home service is well-established in Norfolk and now expanding into Suffolk.