Can You Help? The Vinnies CEO Sleepout takes place on 23 June 2022. On this long mid-winter evening, leaders in business, community and government will sleep without shelter to raise awareness of the challenges faced by Australians experiencing homelessness. The CEO Sleepout also aims to raise millions of dollars to help break the cycle of homelessness and poverty in Australia. Colin Cuthbert, CEO of the Ayers Group has his sleeping bag rolled up and ready to go on 23 June. Over the years, he’s participated in a few sleepouts organised by different groups and says the experience merely “dips your toe into the life of those experiencing homelessness. “The Vinnies Sleepout gives us a small insight into the lives of homeless people who tell their stories in videos presented on the night,” he says. “It’s easy to jump to conclusions about people sleeping rough, but what I’ve learnt is that people end up on the streets for many reasons – maybe they’ve fallen out of employment or a relationship, they’ve injured themselves or become unwell and run out of money – there’s a lot more to homelessness than we think. “It’s particularly worrying right now – the level of homelessness will only increase due to the pandemic and the Ukraine War, as well as high inflation rates, housing prices, and mortgage stress. “For those on the streets, our increasingly cashless society also means fewer people have money in their pockets to give to homeless people.” But there’s more to it than offering money, Colin says. “Through participating in sleepouts, I’ve learnt the importance of connecting with people. “When CEOs participate in the sleepout, they wake up cold and hungry the next morning, but they know they have a home to go to, money in their pocket and equally important, support from good family and friends. Homeless people lose all of that; every night they need to find somewhere dry to lie and they fall asleep in fear of being moved on or having their remaining possessions stolen. “We need to do what we can to help Vinnies provide essential services to the people who need them.” The Vinnies CEO Sleepout takes place in locations around Australia on 23 June. In 2021, the Sleepout raised $9.3 million dollars. How much can we contribute in 2022? To find out your state’s fund-raising target and donate, click here.