CU event to raise homelessness awareness

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By The Staff

Do you know how it feels to be homeless? You'll get the chance April 18-19 on Campbellsville University's campus.

Campbellsville University's Carver School of Social Work will present "Cardboard Nation: A Homeless Experience" beginning Friday, April 18 at 7 p.m. and continuing through 7 a.m. Saturday, April 19 on CU's Stapp Lawn.

"Cardboard Nation's" purpose is to expose the public to the truth about homeless living with all proceeds from the event going to the Green River Ministries Homeless Shelter and Food Pantry.

Registrants for the event will "rent" space starting at a minimum of $25 with a $100 goal for each person attending. The more "rent" you pay, the larger the cardboard box you will be given to sleep in during your night of homelessness. A soup line will begin at 7:30 p.m.

In order to fully experience the situation, it is requested that you bring only one sleeping bag and one pillow.

Chad Baconnier, president of the Social Workers in Touch Can Help - S.W.I.T.C.H. Club, said "Remember, to a homeless person, a pillow is a luxury."

Organizers also ask that participants leave food, drinks, cell phones, laptops and video games behind.

The event will take place on Stapp Lawn if weather conditions are suitable. If it rains, the event will be moved to a parking lot. Regardless, the event will take place. It is all part of the realization of what the homeless live with everyday.

"We wanted to make a big impact," Baconnier said. "We wanted to do a fundraiser on a large scale with a social work twist that would leave an impact. This is what we came up with."

Many activities will be taking place at the event including group skits, a scavenger hunt and acoustic music presented by CU's Oasis Band, as well as contests with door prizes and a special prize for the person with the most money raised.

Green River Ministries Homeless Shelter is in the process of building a new shelter that will house many more residents. With Cardboard Nation, the S.W.I.T.C.H. Club and Carver School of Social Work hoping to raise money and awareness, that will help the process move much faster.

To find out more on the event, or to get a registration or pledge form, contact Misty Willis at the Carver School of Social Work at 789-5049 or by e-mail at mjwillis@campbellsville.edu.

"Rent" is due April 11.

"This is your chance to make a difference. It's a time for good friends, great fellowship and a priceless experience," Baconnier said.

- Andrew Stinson is a student news writer at Campbellsville University.