TWO friends from York are battling the bitter cold and sleeping rough in the Scottish Highlands for five nights.

Norbert Obiezierski, 24, a marketing executive for LSL Property Services who lives in Clifton and Lewis Ewan, 22, from Holgate who works as Ryanair cabin crew are doing The Great Tommy Sleep Out.

The sleep out is the RBLI’s flagship fundraising event that raises money for its work with homeless veterans.

The duo started on Thursday (February 22) and are set to finish tomorrow (Tuesday, February 27).

York Press: Some of the stunning Scottish scenerySome of the stunning Scottish scenery (Image: Supplied)

They are sleeping out under the stars for as many nights as they can with just a sleeping bag and a tarpaulin and have so far endured temperatures down to -7°C. 

"We decided to do this charity sleep out because both myself and Lewis come from military families and have the upmost respect for all our veterans and service men and women," said Norbert.

"We are really passionate about camping and when we saw this fundraiser was happening we knew we had to give our support and help out.

"We believe that as a country we aren’t doing enough for our veterans and this is something we believe needs to change."

York Press: The duo are sleeping out in the openThe duo are sleeping out in the open (Image: Supplied)

As part of the sleepout throughout March, people sleep outdoors for one night or more to raise funds for RBLI’s work with homeless veterans.

Lisa Farmer, RBLI’s chief executive, said: “When you think that an estimated 6,000 veterans are street homeless in the UK right now, the support from people like Jake who take part in The Great Tommy Sleep Out has never been more important.”

She added the sleepout is a “powerful reminder of the sacrifices made by servicemen and women who find themselves without a home when they return to civilian life”.

“This is an important issue, and we are working with the Office for Veterans’ Affairs to reduce veteran homelessness and end rough sleeping,” Ms Farmer said.

York Press: The duo are on basic rationsThe duo are on basic rations (Image: Supplied)

An RBLI spokesperson said the charity can move veterans who are homeless into its emergency accommodation within 24 hours of referral and offer an established pathway with housing providers nationwide.

“Last year, the demand for RBLI’s services for homeless veterans increased by 45 per cent - and with the cost-of-living crisis, the charity expects the cost of housing those already supported to more than treble,” they said.

“Every penny raised by the Great Tommy Sleep Out campaign will go directly to RBLI’s wide range of services providing a home, welfare, and employment support to military veterans.”

To sponsor Norbert and Lewis visit: 

To take part in The Great Tommy Sleep Out in March, go to  to sign up.

York Press: The pair have so far raised more than £700The pair have so far raised more than £700 (Image: Supplied)