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Students to sleepout in Echuca

Sandhurst Diocese students will gather in Echuca on Thursday to sleepout. The event is to raise awareness of homelessness in the community as part of National Homeless Persons’ week.

REBECCA KERR August 4, 2014 3:56am

Kyle Hunter and Maddy Alder.


The hall of St Joseph’s College will be filled with students on Thursday night sleeping out to raise awareness of homelessness in the community as part of National Homeless Persons’ week.

Seven of the nine schools within Sandhurst Diocese will meet for the event, with people travelling from Shepparton and Wodonga.

Event co-ordinator Kirrilee Westblade worked with college staff and students from social justice groups to organise the night.

She said the focus was to look at homelessness in country towns from a youth perspective.

She said the level of student involvement was strong and there had been huge interest in taking part.

‘‘We have really, really active social justice groups,’’ Ms Westblade said.

‘‘We have a very healthy number of students who participate in all levels of advocacy and solidarity.’’

Social justice and democracy group members Kyle Hunter and Maddy Alder were looking forward to being MCs.

‘‘I thought it would be a great opportunity to meet different people and promote awareness about homelessness,’’ Mr Hunter said.

‘‘We’re both in the senior justice team, the justice and democracy group, so we try and get involved with most things like this. It’s just a great thing to get to experience a lot of stuff and gain a wider knowledge of the community you live in,’’ Miss Alder said.

The night will include speakers from St Luke’s Anglicare and Young Vinnies Melbourne, rotation workshops and meals served by St Vincent de Paul.

About 70 students from St Joseph’s will take part on the evening and the hall, surrounding outdoor and verandah areas will be divided up for sleeping rough.

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