CEO Sleepout 2023 raises $1.85m for homeless support
Queensland community and business leaders showed up in the hundreds to spend a cold June night on the ground to raise vital funds for Vinnies Queensland’s homelessness support.
The 2023 Vinnies CEO Sleepout raised an impressive $1.85m across the state, including main events in Brisbane, Sunshine Coast and the Gold Coast as well as community sleepouts across regional Queensland.
As well as entertainment, panels and shared stories from people with lived experience with homelessness, the night saw a guest appearance from Housing Minister Meaghan Scanlon with a special exclusive announcement.
At the Brisbane Riverstage, Minister Scanlon shared some welcome news – a partnership between Vinnies Queensland and the State Government to build 147 social and affordable homes in sites across the Gold Coast, Bundaberg and Toowoomba.
Vinnies Queensland CEO Kevin Mercer said this year’s Sleepout was a special one, as it officially kicks off the 500 Homes in 5 Years project – the Society’s biggest single housing project in Queensland.
“What a special way to announce the start of this project – to have the Housing Minister personally announce it at our biggest event of the year,” Mr Mercer said.
“Each year, we are truly thankful for the hundreds of Queenslanders who spend the night, not just for the funds they raise for homelessness support, but to go out of their way to really learn more about our homelessness crisis and what they can do to help.
“Thanks to our participants in 2023, we now have $1.85m we can use to provide housing for Queenslanders in need, as well as supplying emergency accommodation, food and other essentials for the most vulnerable in our communities.”
This year’s Sleepout also saw the debut of “The GOATS (Greatest of All Time Sleepers)” team, who raised nearly $295,000 for the night – a national record for team fundraising in the event’s 17-year history.
Mr Mercer said the support was especially appreciated in the current housing crisis, as Vinnies continued to receive a growing number of enquiries from people struggling to find affordable housing.
More than 500 people registered for the CEO Sleepout across Queensland.
For more information, visit ceosleepout.org.au