Emmaus Burnley is one of three local good causes to benefit from the first ever Turf Sleepout fundraising event organised by Burnley FC in the Community.

On Friday 12 October, more than 50 fundraisers from as far afield as Hereford and the Lake District bedded down at Turf Moor stadium. The fundraisers combined efforts helped to raise over £28,000 to help fight homelessness in Burnley.

The event aimed to raise awareness and funds for Burnley FC in the Community, Emmaus Burnley and SafeNet Domestic Abuse Service for Jane’s Place.

Neil Hart, Chief Executive Officer of BFCitC, said: “We delivered this event in the same week it was revealed that 449 homeless people died in the UK in the last 12 months. Those numbers shocked all of us taking part and made us even more determined to raise as much as we could.

“We received incredible support from so many business leaders, Burnley FC fans and people who simply wanted to do their bit. Despite the seriousness of the issue, we were all uplifted by the willingness and spirit of the fundraisers on what was a very wet and windy night.

“All the money raised will go to fighting homelessness in our town and we were pleased to work closely with Emmaus Burnley and SafeNet to deliver this unique event.”

Prior to making their way pitchside, the leaders of Burnley FC in the Community, Emmaus Burnley and SafeNet offered insight into how they are all, in different ways, supporting homeless people in the town.

Stephen Buchanan, Director of Emmaus Burnley, said: “What a fantastic event this was. The power of the three charities working together really struck me – it felt like coming to the stadium, we’d come to the heart of the town for a cause that connected so many people across our community.

“We’re hoping to use these funds to purchase a van to help us collect and sell more items, such as furniture. At the moment, we’re spending a lot of money renting a vehicle – to have our own will be far more cost effective and, in turn, will allow us to generate more funds to support our companions. A huge thanks to all those who have supported this brilliant event.”

Emmaus Burnley supports formerly homeless people by providing them with a stable home and meaningful work for as long as they need it. The charity operates two social enterprises in Burnley and Accrington, providing valuable work opportunities to beneficiaries whilst generating an income to sustain the support offered.