THE Windmill Casino in Bloemfontein launched its leg of the Sympathy Sleep-Out Programme, a fundraising charity campaign in aid of the homeless, on Thursday (07/07). The initiative also creates awareness and empathy for the homeless and exposes the challenges faced by vulnerable children every day. This is a Sun International-pioneered project undertaken last year with other corporates. In support of this initiative, a team of employees of Windmill will be participating locally, spending the night under the stars on 28 July from 18:00 until 06:00 to raise awareness around homelessness and the challenges faced by vulnerable children by collecting necessities for identified beneficiaries within the city of Bloemfontein. The Windmill overflow parking area will be set-up with cardboard boxes, a soup station and a bonfire. Available on the night for all participants will be tea, coffee, soup and bread rolls, as well as branded sleeping bags, beanies, scarves and gloves for sale, which must be requested before 28 July.The initiative is a national call to action that says all of #SouthAfricaMustRise. “We are calling on various stakeholders and organisations to rise to the challenge by partnering. As a united front, we will raise needs and awareness through making positive change within our community,” said Yasheen Sookdeo, regional general manager of Sun International. He said several corporates were supporting this initiative. Sookdeo said corporates could support the drive in the following ways: Drive donations at business places and donate funds according to needs; Participate in the Sleep-Out on 28 July and use networking to meet the needs of the organisations identified; Organise team donations and challenge other corporates and organisations; and Leverage suppliers and services. The Windmill will be donating R50 000, which will benefit at least four non-profit organisations in Bloemfontein: Lesang Bana Day Care, Bloem Shelter, the Olympia Primary School and the Shiloh Zoe Hope Foundation.