Hundreds have signed up to sleep out in the cold on Friday night to mark their support for the homeless as part of Homelessness Week.
Charity, We Are ONE Building a Better Future, which runs out of Seville Grove and Kwinana, has organised the homeless sleepout to raise awareness of what it is like to be living cold on the streets of Perth.
Founders Freedom and Tihema Patene, who were once homeless themselves and set up the charity to give back to the people who helped them when they were living on the streets, said more than 500 people were attending the event including homeless people from across Perth.
They said people were homeless for many reasons including mental issues, drugs and alcohol use, job losses and even grief. Between 28 and 80 people were homeless in Armadale at any one food distribution session.
They said Armadale also attracts homeless people from Gosnells, Thornlie and Maddington because it is accessible by train, near a hospital and has major shopping centres.
We Are ONE, which works with other charities and organisations, aims to fill a gap in providing services for homeless people including emergency and permanent accommodation, financial services, counselling, help with finding employment and one-on-one support.
Supported by the City of Kwinana, the sleepout will be held from 7pm on August 5 until 7am on August 6 at the Darius Wells Library and Resource Centre, corner of Robbos Way and Chisham Avenue, Kwinana.
Participants are only allowed to bring a sleeping bag or blankets but no mattresses or yoga mats.
Free food and a band will operate between 7pm and 10pm.
For details visit the group’s facebook page or email email@example.com.
Sleeping in your car for homeless youth
The public is invited to sleep in their cars at Carey Baptist College in Harrisdale this Saturday night in an effort to raise funds to fight homelessness.
The event, run by Bentley-based youth homelessness organisation Fusion Perth, will also raise awareness of the issue during Homelessness Week 2016.
Participants will be asked to donate a good night’s sleep and sleep out in their car to raise funds for Fusion’s work with homeless young people.
There will also be art and music performances and participants will be able to learn more about what it means to be homeless. Fusion student household service coordinator Neil
Curran said homelessness was a massive issue across the country.
“We estimate 105,000 Australians are homeless any one night, 40 per cent of those are young people under 25,” he said.
“The funds that we raise from this event will go towards programs to further increase their independent living skills of young people and their capacity to connect with employment and education,” he said.
“An example is our driving lessons.
“Because a lot of our young people don’t have contact with stable adults who have had their license for over five years it’s very difficult for them to go through the process of getting a driver’s licence.
“We’ll be linking with a program called Ride and the funds we raise will be pretty much subsidising driving lessons and a scheme where volunteers will come in and accompany young drivers while they get up the 200 hours they need to get.”
The event will be held at Carey Baptist College, 51 Wright Road, Harrisdale WA.
Gates open 5.30pm and entry is $5 and free for participants registered to sleep out.
For more information visit fusion.org.au.