(Community Recognition Statement, 11 November 2020, Legislative Assembly, NSW Parliament)

On behalf of the Sydney Electorate I would like to commend Rough Edges for adapting their important annual fundraiser, Roughtober, to be a COVID-safe community event.

Roughtober is a community sleep out where supporters sleep rough for one night to show support and raise money for people experiencing homelessness and marginalisation. I’ve previously taken part and was proud to recently launch the event and speak about why we need to address homelessness.

This year, Roughtober was transformed into a virtual event with socially distanced fundraisers sleeping out on their balconies, in carparks, offices, church grounds and backyards. A live stream allowed participants to share their experience with the wider community through interviews and interactive chat.

The people who joined Roughtober know they had only a tiny taste of what it is like to sleep rough, but their contributions raised over $170,000. This money will allow Rough Edges to continue their work in supporting and bringing together different groups and individuals to share a meal and connect with each other.

I commend Roughtober for raising awareness and the funds to continue Rough Edges providing a place of inclusion and belonging to everyone who walks through their Darlinghurst door.

Let's work together to celebrate and protect our great city!