Monmouth County Legislators Senator Jennifer Beck and Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande will be sleeping under the stars on the grounds of the Statehouse in Trenton tonight, April 11, along with 8 other members of the legislature, from both parties, to raise awareness and funds in support of New Jersey’s homeless runaway and trafficked youth who are served by Covenant House.
“Covenant House is always there, when no one else is, to help homeless, at risk adolescents,” says Casagrande. “I was moved to get involved by the stories of those whose lives have been changed by this remarkable organization. It is my hope that my participation in this ‘Legislative Sleep Out’ will bring attention to the work of Covenant House and encourage others to get involved.”
“Those of us sleeping outside tonight will be lucky. We only have to do it for one night and it will be during the spring,” Beck said. “Hundreds of youths sleep outside every night through the most brutal of seasons and during the harshest of weather.”
Covenant House New Jersey is the state’s largest provider of services to homeless and at risk adolescents under 22. In addition to food, shelter, clothing and crisis care, Covenant House provides healthcare, educational and vocational services, counseling, drug abuse treatment and prevention programs and transitional living programs The agency has been serving New Jersey’s homeless youth since 1989. 141 youth are given shelter by the agency each night. Over 2000 are served in New Jersey annually.
“These government leaders will unite to sleep out in solidarity with homeless kids,” said Kevin Ryan, President of Covenant House International. “Together they will become a unified voice for hundreds of homeless and trafficked kids with no voice of their own; kids who are neglected, forgotten and cast aside.”
The weather forecast for Trenton tonight is a low temperature of 49 degree with an 80% change of rain.
If you would like to support the legislators efforts, visit www.legislativesleepout.org for more information