Activists sleep outside to raise awareness, money for homeless veterans

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Activist planned to sleep outside on Friday night to raise awareness and money for homeless veterans. (WLS)

Activist planned to sleep outside on Friday night to raise awareness and money for homeless veterans. The sleep out is the fifth organized by the Columbia College Student Veteran Association.

They stood in the cold in front of flags, handing out fliers, holding signs, and even making a human conveyor belt to collect supplies for veterans in Chicago's South Loop.

"When I see them, I see somebody that deserves better. I see somebody that we need to be doing more for, and I see somebody who has served this country," said Navy Veteran Kyle Lejeune.

For five years people like Lejeune and Air Force Veteran Sara Valdez have taken one day to camp out to raise awareness and money to help get homeless veterans off the street and into shelter.

"The least thing that we can do, because they serve to protect us and allow us to have freedom, is to make sure they have shelter," said Valdez.

The City of Chicago estimates there are 540 veterans facing brutal overnight temperatures with no place to go.

"We have to do more," said U.S. Army Veteran Karen Hernandez.

"No one should have to live through that or suffer that way. Especially our veterans who have put themselves last serving our country. These are the guys who really deserve a leg up who really couldn't find one," said Marine Corps Veteran Cam Dupre.

The Columbia College Student Veteran Association hopes to raise $10,000. So far, about $3,000 has been riased. To make a donation, visit fundraise.chicagovets.org.
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community-eventsveteranveteranshomelessChicago
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