Mumbai: Former India coach Greg Chappell along with other sports persons and tens of thousands of young people will sleep tonight without a roof on their heads.
The purpose is to raise funds for the Chappell Foundation, which caters to several homeless people in Australia.
"Greg Chappell, has done all previous sleepouts and at age 73 is the oldest of the Sports Stars participating. He is an inspiration", says co-founder Darshak Mehta.
"This is Alyssa Healy’s 3rd participation in our Sleepout. The previous two she did when we held it at the SCG, on a cold winter night, under the stars (in the open) at the SCG. Her husband Mitch Starc also fund-raised for us and slept out on the earlier two occasions at the SCG. Alyssa is an Ambassador of The Chappell Foundation".
"Ed Cowan, former Test Opener is the leading fund-raiser, so far. This is his first Sleepout for us. Ed is a businessman, plus a Director of Cricket NSW and a radio commentator for the ABC".
Former Australian wicket-keeper Phil Emery is doing his second Sleepout. At first, he regretted going away on holiday (skiing) but due to the current lockdown when he had to cancel, he graciously agreed to participate again.
"Cricket Australia (CA) former CEO (for 17 years) James Sutherland is doing his maiden Sleepout. He has persuaded two of his kids to join him in the Sleepout and meanwhile fund-raise. Son Will Sutherland plays for Victoria and daughter Annabel has already represented Australia", Mehtra added.
The long list of other sports persons include James Allen (he was the youngest-ever summiteer of Mount Everest when he climbed it in 1995). He is doing his first sleepout from his quarantine room in Darwin (Australians have to compulsorily quarantine for 14 days on return from overseas). He has experienced homelessness first-hand and appreciates the opportunity of being able to help others.
And also, Australia’s greatest Paralympian Louise Sauvage is doing her third Sleepout. She is an Ambassador of The Chappell Foundation. She won nine gold and four silver medals at four Paralympic Games.
"Our 30 + sports stars hope to raise the equivalent of Rs 40 to 50 lakhs, to enable us to donate this to our partner NGOs - who offer services to the young and homeless like food, shelter, education and mentoring", Darshak Mehta signed off....