Birmingham CEO Sleepout

Birmingham CEO Sleepout

Poverty and deprivation in Birmingham: A report by Birmingham City Council states that in comparison with other core cities Birmingham's rates of homelessness are disproportionately high.

On average 31% of adults in Birmingham do not have academic, vocational, or professional qualifications, significantly higher than the national average of 23%.

Birmingham’s claimant unemployment rate is 6.4% which is the highest of the English core cities- significantly above the English core cities average of 4.5%.


What we are doing through churches: Working in conjunction with Thrive Together Birmingham and the Diocese of Birmingham, Church Urban Fund has supported over 580 local projects to a value of £5.3million to tackle poverty and deprivation across the region. One example is the Birmingham Churches Winter Night Shelter, a city wide partnership of churches and street outreach teams working together to give shelter, friendship, dignity and a hope for the future to those who find themselves sleeping rough.


Expanding our reach: To continue our efforts and increase effectiveness we are partnering with charities CEO SleepoutUK and Villa in the Community to host a CEO Sleepout on the 14th May at Villa Park. The night will see Birmingham's leading business figures sleep outdoors in the grounds of Aston Villa to experience something of what hundreds of homeless men and women face every night. Funds raised will go towards the alleviation of Birmingham's most pressing social needs.


Key Sleepers:

  • Mark Rogers, CEO, Birmingham City Council
  • Russell Jeans, Business Services Director, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce Group
  • Spencer Wright, Chief Executive, Dains Accountants
  • Ruth Cooke, CEO, Midland Heart
  • Rt Revd David Urquhart, Bishop of Birmingham
  • Paul Hackwood, Executive Chair, Church Urban Fund

For the full list of participants go to:


Motivations for getting involved: "I believe we have an inescapable responsibility to help those finding it hard to help themselves - so the least I can do is sleep out for a night to show my commitment"- Mark Rogers, CEO, Birmingham City Council


“CEO Sleepout is a practical way of putting compassion into action, following in the steps of Jesus who put the wellbeing of others before his family, religious laws and his own comfort and livelihood"- Rt Revd David Urquhart, Bishop of Birmingham


Get involved: If you are a business leader in the Birmingham area please join us in tackling poverty by taking part in the CEO Sleepout. To participate send your name, title, photograph and email address to Elissa Flindell at Church Urban Fund, or call 02078981091.


For more information, or to show your support, visit the website:


Visit Aston Villa's Offical Site for their coverage of the Sleepout:

Author: Lynsey Robinson

Date: 31 March 2015