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If you would like to donate, check out 5days.ca
5 Days for the Homeless is a national campaign that takes place annually in 26 universities across Canada where students give up creature comforts and basic necessities for five days to raise money and awareness for Avenue 15, a local youth housing and shelter. This event strives to raise both awareness and monetary donations to help alleviate homelessness.
This will be the sixth year that the University of Calgary has been involved with the campaign. We look forward to once again shedding light on this issue and providing students with a snapshot of what it might be like to live without guaranteed food, shelter, or income.
This is a great opportunity to not only challenge yourself but to experience firsthand what many must go through each and every day. For a particularly insightful view on what 5 Days for the Homeless means, check out our Facebook page, where where Shayna Laurie gives her own personal reflection on her experience.
- Remain on campus for five days. The campaign begins 5pm local time on the Sunday of the campaign week and ends at 5pm local time on the Friday.
- Have no income. 100% of the funds donated to individual campaigns are passed on to their choice of local homeless youth organization.
- Have no food or drinks. Food can only be received through direct donations, and all non-perishable food must be kept and used as a donation for a shelter.
- Have only a pillow and a sleeping bag. These items can be exchanged for an emergency meal.
- Have no access to showers, or facilities to which their student status would usually grant them access. Washrooms can only be accessed when campus buildings are open.
- Sleep outside. The only exception is if inclement weather becomes a health risk.
- Attend all classes. Participants will complete all academic and extracurricular responsibilities, including student organizations and teaching positions.
- Avoid personal communication media. Participants will be expected to not use cell phone or online social networking websites (Facebook, etc.) during the Five Days campaign except for the purposes of promoting the campaign. Each region is required to have at least one cell phone for safety purposes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to remain on campus during the campaign?
Yes. Participants will be expected to remain on campus for the duration of the campaign.
Will I have access to any monetary funds throughout the campaign?
No. Participants will be expected to rely solely on the community (both on and off campus) to provide food donations throughout the week.
Will I be able to use the facilities that my student status would normally grant me access to?
Participants will have access to washrooms. However, the use of the locker room and/or residence buildings for showers will not be permitted. This rule extends to your UPass and gym membership.
Will I have to sleep outside during the entirety of the week?
Yes. Participants will be expected to sleep outside throughout the entire week of the campaign, with the only exception to this rule being if temperatures fall below -20 °c.
Do I have to attend my classes and extracurricular activities?
Yes. Participants will be expected to attend all classes and regular extracurricular activities throughout the week.
Will I have access to electronics during the campaign?
Participants will be expected to not use cell phones or online social networking websites (Facebook, etc.) during the Five Days campaign except for the purposes of promoting the campaign. There will be one cell phone that remains with the participants at all times for safety purposes.
Do I need anything to participate in the campaign?
No. You don’t need anything to participate in the campaign (other than a pillow and your passion about raising awareness about youth homelessness). A winter sleeping bag will be provided to you.