A shortage of social and affordable private rental housing combined with complex social issues makes homelessness a real issue for Australia.
According to St Vincent de Paul Society (Vinnies), over 116,000 people experience homelessness nationally. To put that number into perspective, that’s nearly the entire population of Darwin (circa 136,000, 2016 Census).
Our capital cities like Sydney, Melbourne and Hobart take the lion share of homelessness with the latest research from Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI), using Census data, showing that 63% of all homelessness is found in capital cities, up from 48% in 2001.
Certain demographic groups are disproportionately impacted including males, younger age groups, young families, those with an Indigenous or ethnic background, and unmarried persons.
In Sydney, a corridor of high homelessness rates stretches from the inner city westward through suburbs such as Marrickville, Canterbury, Strathfield, Auburn and Fairfield (more than 30km from the CBD).
In Melbourne, high homelessness rates are found in Dandenong (around 25km southeast of the CBD), Maribyrnong and Brimbank to the west, Moreland and Darebin to the north and Whitehorse to the east, about 15km from the CBD.
One organisation who is helping tackle and raise awareness on homelessness is Vinnies who first launched The Vinnies CEO Sleepout in Sydney in 2006. The CEO Sleepout includes one night sleeping rough, an opportunity for CEOs, business executives and community leaders to reflect on the pressures felt by people who are caught in the grips of homelessness, and to raise essential funds to support Vinnies’ programs.
In 2018, participants raised $6.9 million, that’s
- 1,949,673 individual support programs;
- 689,819 beds; and
- 1,590,554 meals.
This year the goal is to raise $7.1 million!
On 20 June 2019, Smarter Communities CEO Alex Lang will take part in the CEO Sleepout in Sydney.
“As the CEO of the second largest strata company in Australia, we are entrusted by over 5,000 communities to manage their home or investment that provides a home for someone, and I truly hope that none of our people and customers ever end up in such a dire situation to not have a safe home to sleep in.
“Homelessness can happen to anyone, even those that we don’t expect. It has become a very concerning part of our cityscape to see homeless people on a daily basis. I am particularly shocked and disappointed in our community when I see a young family and children living in a car or worse.” said Alex.
“This will be my first CEO Sleepout. Whilst one night may not be a lot and I won’t proclaim to truly understand the struggles faced by the homeless, I wholeheartedly hope that together with fellow leaders we can make a positive impact to our community, drive a more engaged conversation and help break the cycle of homelessness.”
Donate now and help end homelessness.
Your generous donations directly assist people experiencing homelessness, by:
- Funding new initiatives;
- Ensuring existing homeless services, like food vans and emergency support continue;
- Expanding the reach of existing programs to ensure every Australian can access accommodation, meals, and emergency assistance when they need it.