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Sleeping Bag Stories


30 Days, 30 Sleeping Bags, 30 Locations, 30 Companies, 30 Stories


To mark our 30th Anniversary we are sharing with you 30 images of sleeping bags in different locations across Sheffield where people we support sleep rough. Each sleeping bag has kindly been donated by a company who support us. 

Due to Covid-19 we cannot share these photos with you in an exhibition, but we can share them with you over our 30 Days of Homelessness. Every evening on Instagram and Twitter a new image and a new story will be shared highlighting our work, the experiences of the people we support, and the experiences of the people who support us. 

The stories and days are below, all the images can be found in the resources section of our website


8th October: John Lewis 

“We Support the Cathedral Archer Project....As they are a Home, to our Homeless People in our City.”

9th October: CSP Systems Ltd

“We support the Cathedral Archer Project as they offer fantastic support to those who need helping out of homelessness.”

10th October: DTS Plumbing

World Homelessness Day

11th October: Kier

"Yeah we just need that final help, that final bit of help, and I think this place might be the place to help, hopefully. Well if not I don’t know what we’re going to do." - Kelvin, who has used the Project in 2020

12th October: Highlander

“At Highlander we have always tried to help local charities where we can, and the Cathedral Archer Project is one that we've come to know well through the years.  If businesses that are 'surviving' can afford to just give a little then this all adds up to a lot, and makes the impact of the project so much greater.”

13th October: ProAktive

“The Archer Project doesn’t give up on people even if they reject CAP, the staff work at each individual’s own pace.” - Danielle, one of our Partner Volunteers

14th October: Gravitate Accounting

“Gravitate Accounting are delighted to help this amazing project- as a local business we see the number of homeless and vulnerable people in the city and it’s never nice to see, so glad we can give a little back to help out.”

15th October: Mackenzie Spencer

“Mackenzie Spencer are delighted to be supporting the Archer Project.  The charity does great work for people in the city region who have fallen on hard times helping them get back on their feet.  Now more than ever we feel charities like this need support of their own from individuals and the business community to ensure there service continues to be available.

We look forward to continuing to do what we can to assist the Cathedral Archer Project” 

16th October: Network Chilli

"For me the worst time was when I was on the street, losing my children, lost everything, end up on the street. Daunting knowing you have to wake up there every day" - Chrissie (name changed to protect identity)

17th October: My Father's Heart

"Being homeless is horrific, absolutely horrific" - James, on his experience of what rough sleeping was like.

18th October: Mission Nutrition

"In terms of what this service means to me it’s about still giving people some purpose, some routine and obviously the basic life sort of things: food, showers etc. that people need" - Marcus, who volunteered with us earlier this year.

19th October: Enterprise

"The people we support at CAP are victims of childhood neglect and trauma and have never experienced a home or the meaning of a home in the same way the majority of us do in this wealthy country. They aren’t making conscious, informed choices, they are surviving in the best way they know how." - Jo, Deputy CEO

Read Jo's full story and other stories from our staff.

20th October: Kier

Initially Carl* did not want to go into accommodation, however, we continued to work with him providing support, food and access to showers. Our connections with Framework meant that we could work together to provide Carl with the opportunity to make the steps from sleeping in a car every night to sleeping in accommodation. Without the conversations we had with Carl and our joint work with Framework he would have struggled to find accommodation.

21st October: Andrew Rogers Wealth Management Ltd.

“Remember it’s not just homeless, it’s the fact that they haven’t got anything to eat, haven’t got anything to wear… they haven’t got access to anything. And if these sorts of places like the Archer Project weren’t open they wouldn’t have access to a dentist or a doctors, or a hairdresser… or a shower, or getting some clothes washed…how do you get them washed?" - Peta, one of our volunteers

 22nd October: Yvette Stones

"I love the stories that people share and am amazed at the endurance of the human spirit; knowing what someone’s back story is can give you a new found respect of the struggles they have been through in becoming who they are now. Each person whether staff, volunteer or person that uses the centre has their own personal life experiences, which I think, counts towards a deeper understanding." - Anne, Office Manager.

Read Anne's full story

 23rd October: Voot

" did make me think about the surroundings that I was in. And I knew that I had people round about me, if I had been on my own I’d have felt incredibly vulnerable.” - a past participant of our Sleep Out.

Get involved with our Sleep Out Weekend

 24th October: Portland Training Company

"I walk past people begging every single day and that constantly reinforces that something needs to be done and that the Cathedral Archer Project is a good way of helping." - a past participant of one of our Sleep Outs.

 25th October: Sunshine Pizza Oven

Peter* is a vulnerable adult with poor mental health and before lockdown was physically neglected. Throughout lockdown he has been using the Project almost every day, and as a result he has physically improved, and his mental health has not deteriorated. He has found a space where he belongs that is enabling him to slowly improve.

 26th October: Dennis and Edna Bradley

Dennis and Edna Bradley have supported the Archer Project since its inception. On the occasion of Edna's 90th birthday, her family have donated this sleeping bag to continue their support for the homeless of Sheffield.

 27th October: Kier

This week Kier dropped into the Project to deliver the four amazing sleeping bags which they have donated as part of this campaign. Thank you for your amazing support over the last few years.

 28th October: Yorkshire Information Point (YIP)

At YiP Media we are super proud to help and support The Archer Project and especially the sleeping bag appeal. The Archer Project works tirelessly to provide help and support for the homeless throughout the city. We want to help this winter to keep someone warm and support.

 29th October: Tech Systemz

"When I was asked to make a contribution to mark the 30th Anniversary of The Cathedral Archer Project I had many highlights to choose from and which one to write about was the question! 2018 was a massive year for me. Collaborating with Sheffield Print Club our Printed By Us Team had the honour of Hand Screen Printing work commissioned by 10 local artists, to form part of Pete Mckee’s first exhibition in 10 years, entitled “This Class Works”. - James, Operations Manager at Printed By us.

Read James' full story

 30th October: Investec

“You attract too much attention sleeping in the city centre so it’s better to sleep out of the city in quiet places where other people can’t disturb you as much.” - someone who uses the project.

 31st October: Sheffield Wednesday Community Foundation

“When you’re homeless you think no one cares about you” – Lucy*, who has used the Project.

 1st November: Sheffield Cathedral

"I worked with D* whilst he was being treated for Cancer. I had to fight for him to recieve the same opportunities as anyone else with Cancer. Consultants had to be more flexible due to his chaotic lifestyle to ensure he recieved the treatment he needed." - a memory from one of our team

Read the full story

 2nd November: Kier

“The Archer Project helps everyone – they do their best for everyone. If it wasn’t for them I would be in a different place.” – Sarah*, who has used the Project. 

 3rd November: Nationwide in Sheffield

“The Archer Project is a community” - the words of one of our partner volunteers 

 4th November: Nigel Tyas Ironwork

"It isn't always possible to understand why people end up without a roof over their head and I believe no one in England in the modern age should suffer this way. It's unfair to assume all homeless people are simply making bad life choices or on a particular course."

5th November: S4M Business Services

When Rob* first came to the Project one of our volunteers sat with him and chatted about how we could help him. From this chat he made the decision to accept the help and support that she offered him. The path to a fulfilling life is unique to every individual. It can be a slow process, but it starts with simply believing in someone.

For Rob our belief in him helped him to decide to change his life, but self-doubt soon crept in. He soon felt like he had made no progress; that he had not changed from when he first arrived. So the same volunteer sat down with him and asked him to write on a piece of paper all the things that he had done since he had started coming to the Archer Project. She then told him to write on another piece of paper what he had done before he first came to us. On the first he wrote six different things that he had started doing, on the second he wrote drink.

Each small step from getting up on a morning, to joining one of our activities, when written down, became one big step towards a new life. Visualising his life now in contrast to where he had come from was a powerful motivating tool, which enabled him to see how far he had come and where he could go.

6th November: Mark Harvey of iD8 Photography

“Volunteering at the Archer Project has changed my life. It has led me to reflect on how I see the world and how the world sees and understands people who are homeless. I have met people who are ex- servicemen suffering from PTSD, prisoners released with no accommodation in place, people that have had their benefits stopped and been evicted, women that have experienced coercion or abuse and have had to leave the family home and more recently people who recently lost their jobs because of the pandemic. Very few of these individuals that turned up at the Archer Project had ever been in this situation before and none of them looked like the image I used to have in my mind of what a homeless person looks like. For these people the Project is a place of support, a place where people who have nowhere else to go are listened to. Everyone has ideas, thoughts and experiences. The Archer Project listens to those ideas, thoughts and experiences, and helps people to have as fulfilling a life as is possible.”



*Names changed to protect identity.

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