For “One Night Out” on Nov. 5, some Surrey-area residents will sleep outside and fast in an effort to raise money for a cause.
The fifth annual fundraiser is planned by operators of restaurant/bar chain Joseph Richard Group, which has partnered with six local charities “to bring awareness to vulnerable youth in the community.”
They are Covenant House, Youth Unlimited, Variety-The Children’s Charity, City Dream Centre, Phoenix Society and Mackie’s Place.
A “main event” will see people sleep outside that Friday night at a site in South Surrey, or donors can spend one night outside at their home – in the yard or on a patio – during the week of Nov. 1. Another option is to fast for 24 hours, or join a virtual gathering.
Registrants can sign up to support a specific charity, or have their donations split equally among them.
The fundraiser was launched in 2016 by Joseph Richard Group CEO Ryan Moreno, who “continues to push the boundary to reach the goal of one day engaging 700 participants who raise $1 million for vulnerable youth,” explains a post on the One Night Out website, at jrg.ca.
“This year, we are bringing awareness by talking about basic needs like sleep and food that those on the margins don’t have access to.”
Moreno talks about the initiative in video on Instagram.
“After a break due to the pandemic, our team is excited to be back,” the post says.
In 2018, an estimated 200 people bundled up and spent the night on the pavement in the parking lot of Grandview Corners Shopping Centre, next to JRG’s S + L Kitchen & Bar, raising more than $156,000 for Covenant House Vancouver and Youth Unlimited.
“Ryan was deeply impacted by his first experience at Covenant House’s Sleep Out Executive Edition in 2018 when the statistics had a profound effect on his urgency to do more,” says the One Night Out website.
“At that time there were nearly 700 homeless young people in Metro Vancouver, according to the region’s first-ever youth homeless count. With approximately 700 people employed at JRG at the time, Ryan had a vision for everyone to come together to sleep outside in hopes that every single homeless young person in Metro Vancouver would someday not have to.