Vinnies Community Sleepout puts young people in the picture

Youth homelessness is the focus of the second Vinnies Community Sleepout in Brookvale. On Friday 18th August for one night local community members will be able to get a glimpse into what it is like for the hundreds of Sydneysiders who sleep rough. As they broaden their understanding of the issue of homelessness they will be raising money for Youth Reach, Vinnies youth services.

John Donnelly, Broken Bay Central Council President, said that while people often assume the Northern Beaches are home to the rich and famous, there are many young people battling to get a good start in life.

“Youth homelessness is reaching crisis levels across the state. 10,900 young people aged 12 to 18 are currently experiencing homelessness, most are estranged from their families,” John Donnelly said.  

“In this region we are seeing too many young people who are at risk of losing their accommodation or who find themselves couch surfing, without a permanent safe space to call home.

“Between 2006 and 2011 we saw a 17 per cent increase in homelessness rates with a staggering 60 per cent being under the age of 35.”

Youth Reach has been in operation in Brookvale for 30 years assisting young people and providing early intervention supports.

“These marginalised young people have been impacted by crime, truancy, family breakdown, substance abuse, domestic violence, problem gambling, and unemployment. They have limited resources and poor education levels and one of the common outcomes is homelessness and poor living standards.

“We provide a youth drop-in centre, as well early intervention, social inclusion opportunities and outreach programs for young people aged between 11 and 24.

“For just $50 we can obtain photo ID for one person so they can access everyday services like Centrelink or opening a bank account. $1000 will cover the cost training 10 people as baristas, so that they have skills and confidence to get a job in hospitality.”

To keep you company on the night and to increase your fundraising you can organise a group of friends, family or work colleagues to join you.

When: 6.30pm, Friday 18 August 2017

Where: Youth Reach - 12 Powells Road, BROOKVALE