Help for the homeless

The Secretary of the Department of Education and Communities, Dr Michele Bruniges, has again registered for the Vinnies CEO Sleepout to raise funds and awareness about homelessness in Australia.

The St Vincent de Paul Society estimates that more than 12 per cent of homeless people are under the age of 12.

"As an educator, that statistic horrifies me," Dr Bruniges said.

Children living in homeless families are more likely to experience disadvantage throughout their lives, including ongoing homelessness.

"There is a clear correlation between homelessness and withdrawal from school, so it is critical we do everything we can to keep these children in school and provide them with the best future possible," Dr Bruniges said.

This year is the second time Dr Bruniges has participated in the sleepout. She will be joined by more than 1,000 business and community leaders for the national Vinnies CEO Sleepout on 19 June 2014.

Last year's sleepout raised more than $5.3 million towards assisting the 105,000 homeless people in Australia.

There is more information on the Vinnies CEO Sleepout website. Dr Bruniges can be sponsored on the site.

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