Members of IUP’s military service fraternity, Rho Tau Chi, as well as Phi Delta Theta fraternity, will sleep outside this weekend to raise awareness and money for homeless veterans.
A February tradition, the sleepout will start at 8:00 a.m. Saturday, February 13, and end at the same time Sunday, February 14, at the Indiana Walmart. The forecast calls for temperatures in the 20s, with periods of snow.
The volunteers will collect cash and check donations as well as cleaning supplies for Indiana County’s Veterans Parsonage.
During the sleepout, volunteers are not permitted to eat or drink anything other than donated items, so that they can experience what homeless veterans do.
The roughly 28 members of Rho Tau Chi work throughout the year at the parsonage to do repairs, maintenance, and other tasks.
This is the group’s ninth year of involvement in the sleepout. The event raises about $4,000 annually for the parsonage, which relies on donations and does not receive any federal or state funding.
Rho Tau Chi has also been active in the annual Homeless Heroes Stocking Project, organized by the group’s advisor, Kristin Squires. That
project provides stockings stuffed with supplies to about 2,500 homeless veterans in western Pennsylvania.