‘A Night Of Hope For The Homeless’

A dozen people are sleeping outside to raise awareness and funds for those homeless

While many of us will be sleeping cozy in our beds tonight, a dozen people will be voluntarily sleeping on the ground, with temperatures nearing the low 40’s.

It’s all to raise awareness to the issue of homelessness in the Sioux Empire.

“Homelessness is an invisible issue and we don’t like to bring attention to it because it’s not something that is very pretty to talk about,” Bishop Dudley Hospitality House Executive Director Chad Campbell.

But it does exist.

In fact, since the beginning of the year, the organization has served 1,150 homeless men and women, and 55 homeless families.

“The fact that there are people sleeping on the streets at every given night in Sioux Falls is something that I think as a community we should say, we don’t want to tolerate that anymore, and that we have to figure out creative ways to help these individuals who are struggling,” says Campbell.

Like putting your feet in someone else’s shoe.

That’s what a dozen people are doing Thursday night.

They’re sleeping in a tent.

“It’s uncomfortable to sleep on hard ground,” says Campbell.

While there is carpeting and lighting inside… “We know it’s not a total 100 percent realistic picture as someone sleeping on the street,” says Campbell, the fundraising event’s purpose is to show people what it’s like to be homeless.

“I don’t think people realize the different types of sounds that happen, the trains, the people who walk by, the cars, the motorcycles, the airplanes; all those different types of noises that we don’t hear in our homes. And you’re always wondering constantly when you’re on the streets if you’re going to be safe that night.”

The Bishop Dudley Hospitality House has 80 male beds and 20 female beds.

Their goal is to not only give the homeless shelter for a night, but help them become self-efficient.

“This year we have been able to transition 145 men and women back out into the community who are working with their own homes, and we’ve also transitioned 46 families back out into the community.”

But they can’t continue without funding.

The organization is hoping the event will help raise $175,000.

To learn more or donate, visit the Bishop Dudley Hospitality House website.