CEOs early to rise to Vinnies sleepout challenge


Launch of the Vinnies CEO Sleepout 2010
Vinnies State President Barbara Ryan speaking at the launch of the Vinnies 2010 CEO Sleepout. Photo: Kerry Myers.

The Vinnies 2010 CEO Sleepout has raised more than $2 million - twice its fundraising target - ahead of tonight's national event.

Almost 700 business leaders from around Australia have taken up the challenge to experience homelessness first-hand for the night, sleeping out on sheets of cardboard to raise awareness and funds for the plight of the homeless.

"This is an extraordinary result," St Vincent de Paul Society NSW CEO John Picot said.

"What it says is that Australia’s CEOs are determined to do all they can to make a real and tangible difference to the issue of homelessness in this country.

"The fact that a diverse range of business leaders is prepared to take time out to endure this single night of hardship is incredibly encouraging, and indicates a strong Australian corporate culture of social justice."

The event, to be held tonight (Thursday 17 June) in all mainland capital cities, calls on CEOs to raise awareness about the issue of homelessness while raising funds for Vinnies homeless services. In Sydney, where the event will be held at Luna Park, 177 CEOs have so far raised $750,000.

The event has gone national this year following the success of 2009's CEO Sleepout in Sydney, which raised $620,000.

This year the event will be held in Sydney, Canberra (Australian Museum), Melbourne (Etihad Stadium), Adelaide (Adelaide Zoo), Perth (WACA),  Darwin (The Gardens Oval) and Brisbane (Suncorp Piazza, Southbank). Tasmanian CEOs will sleep out at the Melbourne event.

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