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Home   Medway   News   Article

mhs homes sleep-out in Chatham raises almost £7,000 for Caring Hands in the Community and Kent Autistic Trust

30 January 2014
by Jenni Horn

Cllr Iles was among more than 60 fundraisers who spent the night in cardboard boxes in the car park of mhs homes’ head office in Chatham Martime on Saturday.

Best box winner - Rachel McGonigle, Tanya Leadbeter and Rachel Poke from mhs homes

Best box winner - Rachel McGonigle, Tanya Leadbeter and Rachel Poke from mhs homes

They braved windy conditions and a temperature of just three degrees in aid of two good causes: Caring Hands in the Community and the Kent Autistic Trust.

Cllr Iles, who joined the sleepers with husband Steve after coming straight from a mayoral event, said: “It was cold and the wind was biting but everyone was in great spirits.

“It was a good experience and one I would like to do again.

“It is obviously very different to sleeping on the streets because you have warm clothes but it does give you some sense of what it is like.”

The sponsored sleep-out, which has been running every other year for the last decade, has been designed to increase awareness of the harsh reality of being homeless and to raise valuable funds for local charities.

This year the event raised £6,800 which will be split between homeless charity Caring Hands and the Kent Autistic Trust, the mhs homes’ chosen charity for 2014.

Members of Kent Autistic Trust in front of their cardboard house

Members of Kent Autistic Trust in front of their cardboard house

The following companies donated goods: MacFarlane Packaging, Sunlight Development Trust, Edmundson Electrical, Travis Perkins, Medway Insulations and the Dockside Outlet Centre.

Ashley Hook, chief executive of mhs homes, said: “This is the fifth sleep-out I have been a part of. I am always touched by the kindness and generosity of all involved and this year was no exception.”

Pastor Matthew Guest, from Caring Hands, said: “We are so grateful to mhs homes for running this event to raise awareness of homelessness and to support us in the work that we do.

“We see issues surrounding homelessness every day so are very grateful for the support received, which will help us to continue to support vulnerable people across Medway.”

Anyone who wishes to donate to the fundraising can still do so online at

More pictures in the Medway Messenger on Friday. 


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