Sleeping rough to raise funds for Australia’s homeless

30 May 2016

Access Housing Chief Executive Officer Garry Ellender will take part in his fourth consecutive Vinnies CEO Sleepout when he joins more than 100 other Perth business and community leaders for a night ‘sleeping rough’ to raise funds for the St Vincent de Paul Society.

Perth’s 2016 Vinnies CEO Sleepout event will be held at the WACA Ground in East Perth on Thursday 23 June and will see participants weather the elements to get a first-hand experience and understanding of some of the hardships homeless Australians deal with every day, in a bid to raise funds for the St Vincent de Paul Society.

Access Housing CEO Garry Ellender

Access Housing CEO Garry Ellender

To date, Garry has raised approximately $20,000 for the St Vincent de Paul Society through his participation in the past three Sleepout events, including a personal best $8,185 last year.

“A night sleeping outside on a single sheet of cardboard as a mattress in the middle of winter is no one’s cup of tea but this is the unfortunate daily reality for over 100,000 homeless Australians – a number that is far too large given how prosperous Australia is,” Garry said.

“I am proud to again join some of Perth’s leading business minds in helping raise funds for, and draw attention to the plight of, Australia’s homeless by taking part in the 2016 Vinnie’s CEO Sleepout.

“If you can spare a few dollars, I kindly encourage you to donate to my direct fundraising page by clicking here or to any other participating CEOs to help us make a real difference in working towards ending homelessness in Australia.”

According to the CEO Sleepout website, more than 106,000 people are experiencing homelessness in Australia on a daily basis and 44% of these are women, many accompanied by young children. In addition around 60% are under the age of 35 and in the prime of their life.

More than 17,000 Australian children under the age of 12 have no home, representing 17% of the overall homeless population.

On any given night in WA there are around 10,000 homeless West Australians forced to sleep on the streets.

The 2016 Vinnies CEO Sleepout is the event’s 11th instalment, with Sleepout events to be held in capital cities and major regional centres across Australia. Funds raised from the Sleepouts have the potential to not only provide crucial assistance to people experiencing homelessness but to make inroads to addressing the very causes of homelessness with the aim of breaking the cycle of homelessness permanently for as many people as possible.

For more information about the Vinnies CEO Sleepout, click here.