Sleep Out Vancouver - Home Edition

By Natassia Wong ‘21
In today’s frenzy and chaos, we can be reminded that there are many people in need locally whom we can help. There’s a lot of negativity in the world right now, so it’s more important than ever to create a positive impact. With this year’s school theme of Gratitude, let’s take the time to recognize how fortunate we are and how we can step up in times of darkness. 
Although plans were underway, WPGA’s Sleep-Out fundraising event, in support of Covenant House, is now on the list of things we can look forward to next year. WPGA has participated in Sleep Out for several years. By sleeping overnight on the basketball courts outside the Senior School, with a piece of cardboard and sleeping bag, we gain perspective on homelessness in Vancouver. 
Personally, I’ve participated in WPGA’s Sleep Out events in grades 8 and 9. Each time was both insightful and heartbreaking—I got a glimpse of what someone my age was experiencing somewhere else in town. This opportunity helped me recognize the privilege that I am so fortunate and grateful to have. My nights, supervised safely on our school grounds, are a watered-down version of someone else’s reality. On any given night, there are upwards of 500 young people living on Vancouver streets. Many youth are revictimized, having fled one unsafe situation only to be in worse circumstances. 

Although this year, because of health measures, we won’t be sleeping on the basketball court together, there are still ways we can help. Covenant House is bringing this event to your living room floor, backyard or balcony. Visit the Covenant House website to learn more about what you can do. Support this event and sleep out for one night so that homeless youth don’t have to.