Education leaders sleep rough for a good cause

Education leaders sleep rough for a good cause

As the continued impact of the housing and homelessness crisis is felt across the country, the annual Vinnies CEO Sleepout is calling on leaders from across industries to come together to raise awareness and funds in support of homelessness.

Education industry representatives will be joining hundreds of business leaders who will be swapping their beds for cardboard boxes across the country on 20 June as part of the 2024 Vinnies CEO Sleepout.

Leaders from across the education industry taking part this year include Murat Dizdar, NSW Department Of Education, Secretary; Charisse Sweeney, Southside Montessori School Principal; Anthony Cleary, Sydney Catholic Schools Director of Mission & Identity; and Patricia Davidson, the University of Wollongong Vice-Chancellor.

This is the 19th year the Vinnies CEO Sleepout has taken place, with more than $91 million raised nationally to support the vital work performed by the St Vincent de Paul Society’s homelessness services.

As well as spending the longest and coldest night of the year sleeping outdoors, each CEO Sleepout participant commits to raising funds to help Vinnies provide essential services to the people who need them.

According to the latest census, more than 122,000 people are reported to be homeless, with NSW accounting for the most of any state or territory. Recent data from the Australian Institute for Health and Welfare shows there has been a significant increase in unassisted requests for assistance over the last 3 years in NSW.

The St Vincent de Paul Society NSW is a leading provider of frontline services, with more than 100 local services across the state. The Society supported more than 28,000 people through its homelessness and housing, health and community, and inclusion services over the past year.

“The annual Vinnies CEO Sleepout is the largest fundraiser held by the St Vincent de Paul Society each year and plays an integral role in ensuring our services have the capacity to meet the growing need that exists in the community,” Yolanda Saiz, St Vincent de Paul Society NSW CEO, said.

“No one should endure homelessness, everyone deserves a home. The impact the event is able to make extends well beyond the night as participants are challenged to use their connections and influence to make a difference in addressing homelessness.”