Leader, fellow councillors and staff from GWNS at the campout on 1 December 2023.

Published: Monday, 4th December 2023

Councillors from the Royal Borough of Greenwich, residents and local organisations pitched their tents and camped out in freezing temperatures last week to raise awareness of those sleeping rough.

The fundraising campout was part of the Greenwich Winter Night Shelter’s (GWNS) bid to raise £20,000 to help fund activities in their Day Centre including mental health support and advocacy for people experiencing homelessness. 

Cllr Anthony Okereke, Leader of the Council, presented a cheque for £2,000 to Steven Parker, the Shelter’s Chair of Trustees, on Friday 1 December at the Avery Hill Activity Centre. 

Cllr Okereke said: “Homelessness and rough sleeping is devastating for anyone who experiences it. But for those who experience it over the chilly winter months, it can have terrible consequences.  

“Charities like the Greenwich Winter Night Shelter do fantastic work in our borough by supporting some of the most vulnerable people and we’re delighted to be able to present them with this donation from the Council.” 

The donation came from funding received for commercial filming in the borough and was matched by The Big Give Christmas Challenge, meaning the Shelter will receive a total of £4,000. 

Other councillors who took part in the campout included Cllr Lakshan Saldin, who is a GWNS trustee, Cllr Issy Cooke and Cllr Rachel Taggart-Ryan.   

Steven Parker, Chair of Trustees, Greenwich Winter Night Shelter, said: “For the second year in a row, and because of the support of our team, volunteers, local community and great partners like the Borough, we have smashed our fundraising target. We can't thank everyone enough; these funds help us provide year-round support to people in need." 

To donate to the Greenwich Winter Night Shelter, visit www.gwns.org.uk