TWO young girls braved the cold to help raise thousands of pounds for homeless charity Devizes Opendoors.

Friends Daisy Cardiff and Nina Newey, both nine, were part of a group of 16 people who joined in the charity’s annual sleepout at St Mary’s Church, Devizes, to pay for running costs.

The fundraisers had hoped to double last year’s total of £1,300 but the girls alone raised £820 and the total, which is growing all the time, is around £3,700.

Daisy from Devizes and Nina from Calstone, near Calne, said: “We wanted to do this because it’s very cold outside and it must be horrible to sleep without friends and family in the cold and no warm house to keep you safe.

“Devizes Opendoors don’t get any money from the government and every penny makes a big difference.”

Other participants included Joe Bunton, partner and Richard Hay, associate of accountancy firm, David Owen, who have made Opendoors their chosen charity for 2020 and raised £1,800.

The charity thanked local butcher Walter Rose for supplying sausages and bacon for breakfast, the remainder of which will be used for many meals at the shelter. MC Loos lent a Portaloo.

John Saunders, chairman of the trustees of Devizes Opendoors said: “We have been overwhelmed by people’s generosity at a time when people can have charity fatigue.

“The sleepout represents critical funding for us and enables us to continue to grow the charity into other areas, such as the night shelter we are running for the first time this year.

Karin Cardiff, mother of Daisy and volunteer said: “We knew it would very cold and that floor would be hard even with a sleeping mat.”