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Meet the homelessness activists sleeping in the snow in Davos

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on January 25, 2020 - Duration: 01:39s

Meet the homelessness activists sleeping in the snow in Davos

Davos is known as a chic ski resort, a haunt of the rich and powerful, but in a tent at the bottom of one of the slopes a group of campaigners slept out this week to raise awareness about homelessness.

Francesca Lynagh reports.

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Meet the homelessness activists sleeping in the snow in Davos

Swapping skis for sleeping bags.

These activists are raising awareness about homelessness in the Swiss ski resort of Davos as the World Economic Forum takes place.

Andrew Funk runs a charity which upskills homeless people through a mentoring programme to help them get off the streets.

He hopes to get the attention of decision makers at Davos...and push them to act on the problem.

Speaking to Reuters from under a canvas roof, Funk said that night-time temperatures since his arrival had dipped to -17 Celsius, but that the chance to talk to delegates was worth it.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) HOMELESSNESS ACTIVIST ANDREW FUNK SAYING: "Sleep is not the right word.

We rest every once in a while, some people snore, which is makes it a little bit complicated, the fact that the door doesn't shut properly and the breeze comes in makes it complicated.

The fact that you hear footsteps, you see car lights going by and you don't really know what to expect.

That level of insecurity, of the unknown, exists.

This happens to homeless people all the time.

It also reminds you that when we're sleeping here we're lucky because we have nice sleeping bags.

But many people die in the winter." Funk first camped out at the ski resort two years ago, turning up with nowhere to stay and no clue how harsh the conditions would be.

Born in the United States but now living in Barcelona, he was himself homeless for a time hopping from sofa to sofa.

While conditions have been tough, Funk says the only real risk was not coming..... and potentially missing out on the chance to meet delegates and hopefully raise some funds.

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