Frequently Asked Questions

What are the eligibility criteria?

To determine whether you're eligible to participate in the Vinnies CEO Sleepout, click on Register and pick your Event location from the dropdown menu.

How to create a team?

At least one member of the team must register to the Vinnies CEO Sleepout first. A Team page can then be created via the new participant's dashboard. The other team members can then join by clicking the ‘Join Us’ button on the eventual team page.

What happens on the night?

Physical event:

Throughout the night, you will learn about homelessness in Australia, the work Vinnies does and the important role that business and community can play in reducing homelessness. You will hear first-hand from people who have experienced homelessness. Once official proceedings wrap-up, it’s off to experience a night out in the cold.

Online:

If you are joining in via live stream, we will have a scheduled program on the big night. You would need to organise your own frugal dinner and breakfast. There will be ways for you to participate in the live stream, including posting on social media with the hashtag #CEOSleepoutAU. Once the broadcast wraps up , then then it's time to settle in for your night in the car/in the backyard/on the couch.

Remember to use the hashtag #CEOSleepoutAU and tag us in your posts:

  • Facebook: @VinniesCEOSleepout and @VinniesAU
  • Twitter: @CEOSleepout and @VinniesAust
  • Instagram: @CEOSleepout and @vinniesshops
  • LinkedIn: Vinnies Australia and Vinnies CEO Sleepout AU
  • YouTube: Vinnies Australia

What happens in the morning?

There are no scheduled activities on the morning after. We suggest you spend some time reflecting on what you learned and experienced overnight, and share your reflections with the donors and supporters of your Vinnies CEO Sleepout campaign. Don’t forget to ask for any last-minute donations as well.

Can I bring others along to sleep out with me?

Physical event:

The Vinnies CEO Sleepout is for registered participants only. Please DO NOT invite friends, family (including children), colleagues, or bring your pets to the event. We encourage you to recruit other senior business and community leaders to register for the event.

Online:

We are also inviting CEOs, business and community leaders to sleep out with their families – it’s a great opportunity to engage your kids in a conversation about what poverty and homelessness looks like in our country.

What should I bring/use/wear for my sleepout?

Physical event:

The weather will be cold and potentially wet. Make sure you wear warm, comfortable, casual clothes. Please bring your own sleeping bag. A pillow is optional. Electronic items such as mobile phones, tablets and cameras are very welcome to capture your experience of the Sleepout. We encourage social media updates on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter encouraging your network to make last-minute donations and spread awareness of the cause.

Online:

Please organise your own simple dinner (soup and bread) reflecting the options commonly available to people sleeping rough. Please make your own sleeping arrangements and remember to sleep somewhere safe. Organise a simple dinner such as soup and bread roll, reflecting the options commonly available to people sleeping rough. Along with your dinner, also bring a bottle of water, as well as a thermos (or similar) of hot water with instant coffee or tea........You may wish to lay a piece of cardboard on the ground if you are sleeping in the backyard. If the family is joining your sleepout, you are welcome to pitch a tent to keep your little ones warm and dry.

What items shouldn’t I bring or use?

The Vinnies CEO Sleepout is a no-frills event. In keeping with the spirit of the event, please avoid airbeds, luxury bedding, hot water bottles, and other creature comforts. Alcohol is off-limits, as is extra food or snacks.

Can I sleep out in a public place?

We strongly recommend against participating in the Vinnies CEO Sleepout from a public place, and instead we recommend joining us from your own location such as your car, couch or backyard or at an official event venue.

This is to ensure your safety and also respect the dignity and privacy of people who are genuinely sleeping rough.

How does Vinnies help people experiencing homelessness?

Vinnies provides a huge range of holistic services to support people experiencing or at risk of homelessness. There is no one-size-fits-all approach, so each region and service tailors its support to best suit the needs of the location and the individuals assisted. Each year, the millions of dollars raised through Vinnies CEO Sleepout help us to provide crisis accommodation, food, healthcare, counselling, education, employment, and support to find a permanent home for people throughout the country, all year round.

What happens to the funds raised through the Vinnies CEO Sleepout?

Your donations help Vinnies provide food, accommodation and essential services to people at risk and experiencing homelessness.

You can find out more on our website: https://www.ceosleepout.org.au/where-your-money-goes

How has COVID-19 impacted the work of the St Vincent de Paul Society and does this place extra importance on fundraising through this year’s Vinnies CEO Sleepout?

Most of Vinnies’ services for people experiencing homelessness, poverty and hardship have remained running throughout the COVID-19 crisis, thanks to the dedication of our people and supporters. We have had to adapt quickly and develop creative responses to the challenges of social distancing, increasingly relying on digital and over-the-phone methods of providing assistance.

In many regions, we’ve seen an increase in people coming to us for help, yet at the same time our income has plummeted. The necessity of temporarily closing our Vinnies Shops, and the need to cancel and modify some fundraising events, has had a serious effect on our ability to bring in funds.

With more people out of work and struggling with costs, the need for our help is rising every day. This is why the fundraising efforts of our Vinnies CEO Sleepout participants are more valuable than ever.

Apart from giving money, what can I do to help people facing homelessness?

The people we assist often tell us how lonely and isolating the experience of homelessness can be. For someone sleeping rough, a simple conversation can go a long way when so many people walk past without even acknowledging them. You might like to find out what the person likes to eat or drink, and offer to purchase their breakfast/lunch/dinner or a snack. If they have a loyal companion, you could buy a couple of tins of dog food.

If you have some time on your hands and a hunger to help, Vinnies welcomes volunteers to help out with our homelessness services in many regions. Visit www.vinnies.org.au/volunteer to find opportunities near you. Or if you are a registered Vinnies CEO Sleepout participant, sign up for some Vinnies Hours as a unique volunteering experience.

Will the event still proceed in inclement weather?

This is an experiential event which introduces you to what it’s really like to sleep rough. Regardless of the weather, the event will go ahead – so there are no excuses. Some undercover areas will be made available in the case of heavy rain.

COVID-19 safety

In line with advice from the Australian Government, if you are attending the Physical event, we kindly request that you follow the advice of the Department of Health and other relevant government agencies. You can access the fact sheet here. If you have been in close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus, you must isolate yourself for 14 days from the date of last contact with the confirmed case.