One no-frills night: Geelong to host first Vinnies CEO Sleepout in Regional Victoria

The St Vincent de Paul Society Victoria (Vinnies) is partnering with the Kardinia Park Stadium Trust to host the first ever Vinnies CEO Sleepout in regional Victoria, right here at GMHBA Stadium.

The Vinnies CEO Sleepout is an overnight event held on one of the longest and coldest nights of the year – a no-frills experience to give leaders a small glimpse into the lives of over 725,000 Victorians experiencing poverty.

The Geelong Vinnies CEO Sleepout will take place on Thursday 28 June, bringing together over 100 local CEO’S, executives and community leaders to pause and examine the issues of poverty and homelessness. Each participant will commit to fundraising and our collective goal is to raise $200,000 to support Vinnies’ local, volunteer-run community services.

Vinnies Victoria CEO, Sue Cattermole, said the time is now to encourage sustained action, solidarity and compassion for people experiencing hardship in the greater Geelong district.

“Now, more than ever, we need your support. Vinnies Victoria has experienced an average 40 percent rise in demand for welfare support over the past three years and in the greater Geelong district, the rise is as high as 68 percent. Our charity only receives 1.1 percent government funding, so we rely heavily on generous donations from the community to sustain our good works,” said Ms Cattermole.

“Fundraising for the Vinnies CEO Sleepout will provide Vinnies with the financial means to not only respond to immediate needs in local communities, through home visitation and assistance delivered via regional assistance centres, but advocate for change too.”

Kardinia Park Stadium Trust CEO, Michael Brown, said spending one night in relative discomfort at the Stadium is a small sacrifice for leaders who care deeply about their local community.

“We’re promising a no-frills night at GMHBA Stadium and participants will be comforted only by a piece of cardboard to sleep on and a cup of soup for dinner – but we hope it will provide a momentary glimpse into the hardship experienced by people in the greater Geelong district who are struggling to make ends meet,” said Mr Brown.

“The Kardinia Park Stadium Trust is proud to be supporting the Sleepout, because every cent raised will be backing Vinnies’ local, volunteer-run community services that provide people with the basic things people need to survive – food, school fees, transport, clothing, furniture, and more. As a community-centred organisation, this is a big part of our mission.”

Vinnies has over 2,200 volunteers in the greater Geelong district, and over 12,000 in Victoria, who spend their personal time in communities big and small, on streets and in houses, connecting with people face-to-face to listen, care and give them the resources they need to get back on their feet.

To get involved in this fantastic event visit www.ceosleepout.org.au/event/geelong

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