PEOPLE can help raise awareness and funds to tackle homelessness at The Hills Winter Sleepout.
This is the fourth year it has been run, which has helped raise the profile of homelessness in the Hills region.
Participants raise money to sleep at the Sleepout on August 12, and people can donate by sponsoring a participant or donating at the event.
The money will go towards Hills Community Aid and the Lisa Harnum Foundation.
The organisations help people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, including women and children trying to escape from domestic violence.
The Hills councillor Michelle Byrne, who founded the event when she was mayor in 2014, said the community is becoming more aware of homelessness in the area.
She said couch surfing is one of the main forms of homelessness in the Hills.A lot of people didn’t know we had homeless people in the Hills,” Cr Byrne said.
Cr Byrne said:
A lot of people didn’t know we had homeless people in the Hills, I think it is a significant issue, and the Sleepout makes you appreciate having a warm bed and a roof over your head.”
The issue of homelessness and transitional housing for domestic violence victims was recently discussed at the July 11 council meeting.
Additionally, Cr Byrne said;
It is a huge issue in the community. We would like to think that everyone is safe and secure, but it is not the case when it comes to talking about domestic violence.”
Gracelands Early Education Centre director Liz Russo has been involved in previous Sleep Outs and encouraged the community to get involved. Liz remarked:
It is cold, miserable, but a lot of fun as well.”
The Hills Winter Sleepout chairman Bill Tyrrell said the event is currently on track to get 100 people sleeping at Bella Vista Farm Park.
People can also pay or raise extra money to sleep under cover, or sleep at home.
2GB’s Ray Hadley will be involved in the Sleepout.
Mr Tyrrell said:
It is great to have Ray involved. We intend to have a couple of politicians at the Sleepout. The Sleepout is all about raising the profile of homelessness in the Hills.”