Clover's eNews - No 563

Hi

Sadly there's been a recent spate of violent attacks on homeless people - the most vulnerable people on our streets.

I think most Sydneysiders were as horrified and sickened as I was hearing about the attacks - there's just no place for them and it makes me more determined to do everything I can to help rough sleepers find homes.

A recent City of Sydney homeless street count found there are 56 fewer homeless people than the summer count, but that still leaves 307 others who are risking their lives every night.

Chronic homelessness has been a problem in Sydney for decades, but by working with State and Federal Governments we're helping more get a roof over their heads.

It's a tough issue but by comparing previous street count figures and the results from services such as Way2Home we are cautiously optimistic that a real reduction in the numbers of rough sleepers has occurred since the first count in August 2008.

It's been an eventful week. On Thursday night I attended Vogue Fashion Night Out at Pitt St mall. This great event featured more than 600 large and small retailers opening their doors late. Retailers are facing tough economic times so it was great to see so many looking at new ways of stimulating shopping in the city. I'm pictured with Jessica Gomes - Vogue Fashion's Night Out Ambassador, Kirstie Clements - Editor in Chief of Vogue Australia and Bob Jordan - Westfield Managing Director Australia and New Zealand.

On Friday I attended the SMH Young Writers of the Year Awards. How wonderful, that despite all the distractions the internet has to offer, young people are writing - and writing at length. They're understanding words, alive to nuance, analysing structure, knowing the rules and knowing how and when to break them.

Friday night I helped launch the Fringe Festival - a feast of edgy, provocative art and entertainment. While it remains firmly entrenched in the inner West, this year it's also reaching out to the inner east.

Today is the 10th anniversary of September 11. I was at home when I first heard the news in 2001. I had the TV on and was shocked when I saw the first plane hit one of the towers. Then the second plane hit the other tower and I think we all knew, at that moment, that something catastrophic was happening that would change the world.

I watched it unfold in disbelief and it was heartbreaking to see people in the towers trying to escape. I'll never be able to forget the images from that day. My thoughts are with everyone who lost loved ones on that fateful day.

This week:

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Cheers
Clover

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