Students Bring the Homelessness Issue to the Streets – Literally

No Home is a charity awareness campaign organized by the Student Marketing Association (SMA) in collaboration with the Covenant House of Vancouver. The campaign aims to create awareness about youth homelessness in Vancouver.

On March 12th, 2011, No Home participants will gather together at the Vancouver Art Gallery (along Georgia St.) at 9:00am and stay there for 24 hours. While there, they will only be allowed a pillow, a blanket, and the clothes on their backs. They also won’t have food unless it’s donated.

No Home Campaign 2011

The first No Home campaign happened in 2009. This year, David Yuen and Joanne Leung are heading the campaign.

“SMA wanted to bring No Home back and to continue tackling the issue of youth homelessness because we believe that it’s important for students to realize that many of these homeless youths are a lot like us, just under different and unfortunate circumstances,” says Joanne.

She adds: “Both David and I chose to get involved in this project because we saw how big of an impact the 2009 campaign made.  We wanted to help create a change — no matter how big or small — in our community.”

If you’re looking for ways to help the campaign, Joanne suggests the following:

1.     Donate to the Covenant House of Vancouver through www.NoHome.ca.

2.     Participate in the Sleep For the Streets event. To sign up, please email no-home@sfu.ca with your name and phone number.

3.     If you can’t participate, drop by at the Vancouver Art Gallery on March 12 to show your support to student participants.

4.     Pass on the message to your friends and family to help spread awareness of the issue.

You can also contact Covenant House of Vancouver for volunteer positions if you’d like to help throughout the year.

Already, the No Home campaign has captured the attention of various media outlets in Vancouver, including 24 Hours Vancouver, CTV, and CBC and The Peak. This campaign provides a good example of what student involvement can do and the impact and awareness it can bring to the community.

For more information, visit the No Home campaign website or the Facebook page.

By Kelvin Claveria

Photo credit: NoHome.ca