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HerCanberra Sleeps Out

Beatrice Smith

Every night, around 2000 people sleep rough in Canberra

We’ve all experienced the same awful winter this year, however while many of us have been dialling up the heating and moaning about having to buy new warm clothes, 2000 Canberrans have been seeking shelter from the wind, rain and even snow every night.

The 2015 Canberra Community Sleepout (CCS) is happening on Friday October 16 and offers Canberrans a tangible way to gain an understanding of what it means to be homeless while raising money for charity. The CCS aims to raise awareness of both homelessness and the domestic violence that acts as a contributing factor.

Participants will sleep outside at the AIS Track and Field Complex while raising money for [email protected] and the Canberra and Goulburn branches of the St. Vincent de Paul Society, whose tireless efforts support homeless Canberrans every day.

HerCanberra have registered a team of five writers and staff to put our money where our mouths are and represent our passion for a better Canberra at the CCS. At the moment we’re aiming to raise $5000.

“Despite Canberra being consistently named one of the best cities in the world to live in, it appalls me that every night, over 2000 people in our city are homeless. Many of those people are victims of domestic violence, and under extreme duress to protect themselves and their families,” says Jose Walsh, who writes for HerCanberra and is a part of the HerCanberra’s CCS team.

“Together we can awareness of the avenues available to protect those who are homeless or at risk of becoming so. Let’s crank up the volume on conversations about domestic violence, youth at risk and other factors that lead to homelessness, so that one day it’s a conversation that no longer needs to be had.”

Our team will spend the night of October 16 sleeping outside at the AIS and we hope that the money we raise and the experiences we have will contribute to a better Canberra.

“Ever since I was a little girl I’ve wondered and worried about people who sleep rough. I wish I could provide a roof over the heads of each of them, as well as food and plenty of hugs,” says HerCanberra writer and CCS team member Alex Tolmie.

“More people need to understand the reasons others end up on the streets and the CCS provides an opportunity to learn more about homelessness and what you can do to help. Now that I have two little girls myself I want to show them you can do more than just wonder and worry – you can take small actions to make a difference.”

You can donate to the HerCanberra’s Canberra Community Sleepout page here. We’re also looking for corporate sponsors who will get special mentions on social media over the course of the sleep out. If your business would like to sponsor our team please send an enquiry to: [email protected].

If you’d like to participate in the Canberra Community Sleepout as an individual or register a team you can do it here.

We hope to see you at the AIS on October 16 so we can wake up to a better Canberra together.


Image courtesy of Cylonphoto and Shutterstock.com


Beatrice Smith

Bea loves that her job as HerCanberra’s Online Editor involves eating, drinking and interviewing people - sometimes simultaneously. The master of HerCanberra’s publishing schedule, she’s usually found hunched over a huge calendar muttering to herself about content balance. Otherwise, you’ll find her at the movies or ordering a cheese board. More about the Author