On Friday the 25th to Saturday the 26th of February Teresa Omert ran a sleepout at Merchant Taylors School to raise money for New Hope charity in Watford (https://www.newhope.org.uk/) that helps the homeless in the local area. 9 teachers were present for security but looking after the 54 volunteers were 20 sixth formers as part of the school charity drive team. They were given the responsibility of “running the event” and split the night into shifts looking after students as young as eleven. She said the best part was the morning when she knew that “everyone had a good night”. Early on in the night activities such as football and an indoor cinema were ran with time for shelter building afterwards. In the future she plans to supply more materials for the fort building so that protection against the elements is adequate as well as increasing the time available for football as the games involved the entire school community including teachers.


The just giving page has raised over 3 times their target of £1000 with students encouraged to get multiple family members and friends to donate. The sleepout had been run previously in 2020 and many of the sixth form volunteers had taken part two years earlier. The number of attendees had almost doubled from last year with pockets of students huddled around different corners outside the school. They built makeshift homes out of cardboard but were otherwise exposed to the elements. At an early start of six in the morning the sixth formers did rounds to wake up the boys before taking down their structures together in a final act of unity.