Opening doors for the homeless in Chelmsford


CHESS has an annual fundraising event called ‘The Sleep-out’. This is where people from all walks of life sleep rough for one night to raise funds for the charity. It’s a fun evening, but it also captures the heart of many people who complete it, as they experience what it could be like to sleep rough for one night. This happens every year at the end of November.

Chess Sleep Out – A night under the stars!

Sleeping out for the night might be fun, but for many people this is every night reality!  CHESS works to relieve homelessness and hardship amongst single adults in Chelmsford and Essex through the provision of support services and temporary accommodation.

CHESS provides a 7 bedroom night shelter along with shared move on accommodation. Here we provide a safe place to stay along with a hot meal, drinks, hygiene/laundry facilities, support workers and a counsellor.  With our shared housing we can support up to 30 individuals at any one time. 

We aim to support individuals from the moment they step through the door into our night shelter until they move on into their own independent accommodation. 

During the Winter months we run our Winter project, providing the many rough sleepers with food, drinks, sleeping bags and a bed for the night, normally in one of the local church halls.

Every year CHESS hosts its own Sleep Out in the grounds of Chelmsford Cathedral and this year we want as many people as possible to join us and make this the biggest and best sleep out and experience what it is like to sleep rough for a night.

Find out more and get involved with this years event

If you can’t make our sleep out then why not

Host your own Sleep Out – Families, Work Places, Youth Groups and Clubs

If you can’t make our “Sleep Out” then why not  get a group of friends, family or work colleagues together and host your own sleep out event. 

Decide on a suitable date and safe venue and make it lots of fun whilst raising awareness of homelessness.  You can set your own target! and raise as much sponsorship as you can.

To host your own sleep out you need to provide:-

  • A safe place in a property owned by your organisation or somewhere your group has the right to be.
  • The appropriate insurance, a full risk assessment and first aid provisions (with first aider on site).
  • Permission forms for all attendees under 18
  • The correct ratio of qualified adults to under 18’s


Schools and Kids Clubs – Teddy Bear Sleep Out

Our very own mascot, Chessney Bear is asking for the support of schools and clubs to take part in the Teddy Bear Sleep Out.

The Teddy Bear Sleep Out may take any form you like from sleeping the bears on the school field or in the playground. Or if you are a club i.e Cubs/Browines you might like to get a group of you together and sleep out yourselves.

Once you have registered you will be able to download your very own event pack including,  “This Bear Belongs To Labels”, Worksheets, Letters and Sponsor Forms.

Don’t wait get signed up now and help make a difference in your local community!

Support Chess

Fundraising for CHESS can take on many different forms. If you have a passion to raise funds for CHESS please let us know how we can support you to do so. Here is a short list of things other people and groups have done in the past – what could you do?

  • London marathon
  • Dress down days at work
  • Charity meals
  • Charity Auction
  • Pierathon – walking the length of marathon up a down the Southend pier
  • Comedy showcase events
  • Sponsored walk
  • Jumble sales
  • Tombola’s
  • Carol services