(Port Elizabeth) – CEOs and senior executives will be trading in their plush home comforts and hitting the streets for a night in July in a bid to raise funds for local charities in a now-annual event called the CEO SleepOut.
The Port Elizabeth chapter of the event was launched yesterday (June 22) at The Boardwalk Hotel, with the establishment announcing that its executives, employees and representatives from approximately 50 other local organisations would be spending the night under the stars on 28 July “to raise awareness and collect necessities for local children’s charities”.
“The Boardwalk challenges other local businesses to join its team of volunteers in braving the cold for one night at the 2016 CEO Sympathy SleepOut to help spread warmth and hope amongst vulnerable children at Healing Minds Community Centre and Khayalethu Boys,” it said in a statement.
“Sympathy SleepOut volunteers will spend the night under the stars in the Wimpy Forecourt at The Boardwalk. There will be various activities throughout the night to keep everyone in good spirits as they give up their home comforts to support this worthy cause. In addition, soup will be prepared on site for distribution to needy communities the following day by The Boardwalk staff members.”
The Boardwalk’s CEO Sympathy SleepOut is aligned with the Sun International CEO SleepOut to be hosted in Johannesburg on the same night.
The CEO SleepOut, founded in Australia in 2006, challenges local business leaders to join the global movement to raise funds, awareness and empathy for homelessness and the challenges faced by vulnerable children every day.
The inaugural South African CEO SleepOut in 2015 raised more than R26-million through its inaugural event. Many of the country’s top business leaders have already registered to participate in this year’s event.
“We encourage caring businesses to be part of our first CEO Sympathy SleepOut. We will be spending a night under the stars in a show of solidarity with Sun International’s CEO, Graeme Stephens, and representatives from some of the country’s top companies,” said Brett Hoppé, The Boardwalk’s general manager.
“By sacrificing home comforts for just one night and donating to this worthy cause, local companies can help alleviate the burden on two of Port Elizabeth’s children’s charities by providing warmth, nourishment and other necessities. These organizations rely heavily on the support they receive from caring corporate citizens to continue operating.”
Companies can be part of the initiative for a donation of R5 000 or items to that value. On the wish list from Healing Minds Community Centre are a computer, washing machines, an electric stove, toilets, a deep freezer, an urn, kitchen cabinets and appliances, bed linen, curtains and a taxi for transporting the children.
On the wish list for Khayalethu Boys is warm winter clothing, personal hygiene products and toiletries, sports equipment, cleaning materials, and boys shoes, in particular “takkies”.