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UNLV students raise awareness about homelessness

Posted: 12:31 AM, Nov 08, 2019
Updated: 2019-11-08 14:09:39-05

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — UNLV students are hoping to help raise awareness about homelessness in the valley.

Members of Phi Beta Sigma, a UNLV Fraternity, hosted a charity event and slept on the lawn of the Student Recreation and Wellness Center on Thursday night.

Campus Adviser Johnathan Lytle said the experience allowed members to step into the shoes of the valley's homeless population for the night.

"It was extremely cold," Lytle said, "the ground is rough, cold, unforgiving."

The group collected three car-fulls of toiletries, blankets, and clothes for the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth including suit clothes.

"Hopefully it will help them with job interviews," member Brian Warren said, "it's good to put ourselves in the shoes of the people we're talking about. It's so often that we are disconnected from the homeless."

Chapter members said helping homeless charities became more important when Las Vegas City Council passed an ordinance banning camping in public spaces when beds are available at nearby homeless shelters.

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Phi Sigma Beta Chapter Vice President Elliott Johnson said the fraternity has been hosting "sleep-out" events for the previous three years.

He said anyone who wanted to further their homeless outreach efforts could reach them through Instagram @UNLV_sigmas.