On Thursday the 18th of June I’ll be joining more than 1,000 CEOs from businesses across Australia, to get a small (and I know not wholly representative) understanding of what life on the streets must be like for thousands of Australians.
This year, the Vinnies CEO Sleepout is celebrating its 10th anniversary, a milestone that is being marked by a $10 million fundraising target. This target is so much more than a number, because behind every dollar is the potential to both provide crucial and much-needed assistance to the homeless and to work to make inroads into addressing the root causes of the homeless epidemic – with the stated aim of breaking the cycle permanently for as many people as possible.
Opportunities of this nature don’t come up all that regularly in business life and I’m pleased to be part of this year’s campaign as this issue is one on which I’d really like to make a difference, even if just a small one.
Please help and support my involvement in the 2015 Vinnies CEO Sleepout by making a small (or large if you like and can afford it!) donation to what is a very worthwhile cause. This is a cause that as a community we cannot afford to ignore, so please help out if you can. If you need a little more convincing of the ways that your donation can help, take a couple of minutes to watch Vinnies Family, a compelling video on the topic.
Some figures on Homelessness in Australia:
- 60% of the homeless population is under the age of 35
- More than 17,000 Australian children under the age of 12 have no permanent home
- 17% of homeless Australians are aged over 55. Of these, 36% are women
- People experiencing homelessness are more likely to suffer from severe mental health issues than the rest of the population
- Homelessness brings with it a heightened vulnerability to violence
- Unemployment, family breakdown and drug and alcohol abuse are additional factors that lead to homelessness.
Simon was the GM and Head of Business at SitePoint, and a mentor at INCUBATE.