Author: Helen Cox

Helen Cox is a UK author. She made her on-screen debut in The Krankies in 1990. Given the choice, her Mastermind topic would be Grease 2 and when someone asks her if she is a god she says 'yes.' Oh, you want to know about her books? Best click some of the links below.

The Big Un-Sleep: A Fundraising Project

Tamorlan

If you’ve heard my story already, you can skip straight to donating on my JustGiving Page.

Otherwise, you might want to take a look at the below…

A few evenings ago, on my walk home from a showing of Buffalo 66 at York City Screen, I had a conversation with a homeless man. It was a rainy night. One he was to spend in a doorway – which he explained was dry and sheltered from the winds, as though I was the one who needed reassuring.

On my way back to my own cosy double bed, complete with not one but two duvets, I couldn’t help but think about the night that man had ahead of him. And, while passing another person sleeping on cardboard in Card Factory’s doorway, tears started to fall. The man I spoke to wasn’t an isolated case. Nowhere near. Even in my own, quaint little city of York, North Yorkshire.

The topic of homelessness has always cut very deep for me, as I think it does for a lot of people. In the past I’ve given to charities and, much to the understandable annoyance of some, to beggars.

But small change isn’t enough for me anymore.

I’m tired of seeing people being treated like non-humans because they’re without permanent address and I’m downright frightened that this issue, alongside others we don’t want to deal with like mental illness (which is of course associated) will continue to be ignored because it’s just too uncomfortable.

Consequently I’ve devised a fundraising event called The Big Un-Sleep to raise money for homeless charity, StreetLink. A service through which rough sleepers can be reported so they can get the help and services they need.

Sleepless nights are a regular occurrence for homeless people worldwide. For my Big Un-Sleep, which takes place on Sunday 6th March 2016, I’m going to stay awake overnight and write a 3000 word piece of narrative non-fiction about homelessness. This means the story will be based on my own experiences of the homeless community. Once edited, the story will be published as a free e-book next December in the hopes of raising awareness about this issue.

Anyone who knows me understands a sleepless night will be a considerable challenge unto itself but I’m not even allowing myself to go to sleep the following morning. It’s not like a homeless person would get that luxury after a night of sleeping on concrete. I have to stay awake until at least 9pm the following evening. Then I’m going to imagine how I’d feel if I did that every night for six weeks. Without a hot shower or a warm bed to look forward to. How it’d feel to watch people pass by, looking anywhere except at me because it’d be so much easier for them if I didn’t exist.

I’d love you to donate, of course, but if you’re a fellow writer, please consider writing your own stories about homelessness for the world to see. Anything that helps us see homeless people for what they are: real, valuable human beings worthy of care, love and attention.

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This entry was posted on February 10, 2016 by in Author Blog and tagged , , .
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