Helping issue hit home
SLEEP OUT SPREADS WORD ON HOMELESSNESS
ABOUT one in 20 people experience homelessness every night across Australia.
To fight this statistic, more than 100 business, government and community leaders in WA will participate in a sleep out to raise money for the St Vincent de Paul Society.
Tennis West chief executive and Hopman Cup manager Geoff Quinlan will step out of the Burswood-based headquarters to get involved on June 23.
Participants will brave the winter weather and sleep outside the WACA on one of the longest nights of the year with just a sheet of cardboard.
The sleep out aims to raise awareness of issues faced by homeless people, as well as raise vital funds to support current and new responses to homelessness in WA.
Mr Quinlan is striving to raise at least $5000 to help break the cycle of poverty and homelessness.
“I’m proud to participate as I know more and more individuals face the hardship of increasing house prices and rents that force them onto the streets,” he said.
“It’s a fundamental right to be able to sleep with a roof over your head, and the homeless crisis is an issue I feel strongly about and hope to play a small role in addressing and bringing awareness to.
“These individuals are the most vulnerable, the most at risk and we need to do all we can to provide adequate shelter to the thousands who have no place to call home.”
Last year WA leaders raised more than $880,000, which helped the St Vincent de Paul Society assist 40,000 people.
St Vincent de Paul Society WA chief executive Mark Fitzpatrick said the event enabled leaders to come together and make a difference in the lives of the less fortunate.
“This year we want people to understand the true reality of homelessness,” Mr Fitzpatrick said.
“While you sleep, more than 105,000 Australians have no place to call home.
“About 27 per cent of Australia’s homeless are children and 23 per cent are faced with this situation due to domestic and family violence. Behind each statistic is the story of a fellow Australian who has experienced the extreme isolation and desperation of homelessness.”
Donate to Mr Quinlan’s fundraising page at www.ceosleepout.org.au/ceos/wa-ceos/geoff-quinlan.
Tennis West chief executive and Hopman Cup general manager Geoff Quinlan.