Winter Sleepout for St Vincent de Paul

Last Friday, the annual MSCW Winter Sleepout took place. This night gave the Woolwich girls the opportunity to have a glimpse into the realities and hardships of homelessness for many people in Sydney. The evening commenced with two guest speakers from St Vincent de Paul, Jennifer Aduckiewicz and Cathy Langman, who shared statistics about homelessness in our local area and the struggles many of these people face. This was followed by some activities conducted by the Marists in Action leadership team, including a ‘privilege walk’. This moment allowed students to recognise their privilege in various degrees and come together to reflect on how fortunate we really are.

We braved the winter cold on Cerdon Plaza to share a meal of noodles and a bread roll for dinner. This time in the cold allowed us to especially understand how challenging it must be for those facing homelessness in winter. After some downtime spent bonding with students and teachers, all that was left was a night’s rest on the floor of Bon Repos. Although not the best night’s sleep, this uncomfortable night gave us a window into homeless people’s lives and made everyone grateful for their beds. Through this event, students gained a sense of gratitude for their blessings and saw the struggles many homeless people faced. Each student who participated also donated $10, which goes directly towards supporting the St Vincent de Paul homelessness services in our local community. A very big thank you to the teachers who were with us throughout the initiative!

Charlotte Broeking – Social Justice Co-Captain