Meet Salin: The person behind the stat

Homelessness Week (7-13 August, 2023) is one of the most important events in the Orange Sky calendar – a time to raise awareness and shine a light on the 122,494 Australians doing it tough right now. 

Sadly, that’s one in 210 of us, but behind this statistic are complex and diverse life experiences, proving that no two people have the same journey. By sharing the stories of hardship from the voices of our friends, we can better understand the person behind the stat, and how we can support those doing it tough in our community…

Like Salin, who Orange Sky has supported for the past three years through access to free laundry and shower services, as well as a place to connect. 

Salin works a few shifts here and there unloading shipping containers, however income can become unreliable when the days are quiet and there is no work to be done. Orange Sky has been able to support Salin by providing access to free laundry and shower services, as well as the opportunity for connection.

“I am homeless at the moment and sometimes I don’t have enough money to use the laundry facilities. Orange Sky helps me, I bring my washing here maybe every two weeks. After a shift I feel good, not just because of the washing, but it’s also because I talk to the team who’s here and they are friendly. I live by myself and I don’t have too many close friends, my family is back in my country, Afghanistan.” – Salin, Orange Sky Friend.

In the times where Salin faces loneliness and unemployment, he knows that there will always be a group of welcoming people at his regular shift ready for a laugh and a long chat.

And so, every day, Orange Sky is there in locations across Australia, ready to support people doing it tough. In every one of our vans, pods and laundromats, there are six orange chairs that are pulled out at each shift to create an opportunity for volunteers and friends to connect through non-judgemental conversation.

The Sudsy Challenge is an amazing way to start a conversation, and raise funds and awareness this Homelessness Week so that friends, like Salin, have access to the essential services that Orange Sky provides. 

Whether you get a workplace team together, join your classmates or fly Sudsy solo, we’d love to have you on board for Sudsy September! By not changing clothes, you can help change the narrative around homelessness – and the lives of people doing it tough.

This Homelessness Week, grab your pals, keep your kit on and talk about Orange Sky with your community. Sign up today!

Don’t Change Clothes, Change Lives!

Sign up to The Sudsy Challenge

Yarns from the Road With Judith Meiklejohn: GAPUWIYAK, NT

Nestled at the top of the Northern Territory, in north-eastern Arnhem Land is Gapuwiyak. This remote community is roughly 872 kilometres from Darwin, and interestingly, Gapuwiyak is 219 kilometres closer to Papua New Guinea than it is to Brisbane, Queensland (where Orange Sky HQ is located). In the Yolgnu Matha language spoken by the community, ‘Gapu’ means water, and ‘Wiyak’ means salty or brackish, reflecting the community’s deep connection to the surrounding environment.

The road for Orange Sky to join the Gapuwiyak community was as smooth as they come. Odd, considering this was Orange Sky’s (often unlucky) number 13 Remote Service Rollout! The Remote Vehicle was entrusted to Orange Sky Service Leader (Northern Rivers), Dave Paulsen and his wife Joanne, to travel 3,509km from Brisbane to Darwin.

From there, myself (pictured, left) and Aimee Tyson (Orange Sky Remote Coordinator, pictured right) made our way along the Central Arnhem Highway from Darwin to Gapuwiyak. We had planned to make this leg of the trip by barge with the vehicle but were unable to (maybe this was that 13th roll-out luck kicking in?). We were welcomed into the community with people clapping and cheering as we drove in.

As with all of our services in remote communities, our shifts are run by local people employed by a local community controlled organisation. This fulfils Orange Sky’s Reconciliation Action Plan commitment to facilitate and promote self-determination. Access to clean laundry facilities is an essential service to promote wellbeing in remote locations of Australia.

We are so grateful to be welcomed into the Gapuwiyak community, to wash, yarn and connect together with ALPA and Gapuwiyak residents.

Find out more about Orange Sky’s ‘innovate’ RAP

Orange Sky's RAP

NAIDOC Week 2023; celebrating how Elders pave the way for meaningful connection

This NAIDOC Week 2023 we reflect upon and celebrate the role that Elders have played, and continue to play, in our communities. For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, ‘Eldership’ is more than age. It is a title of honour and respect, given to those that are entrusted with “maintaining the cultural well-being of family, community, and country” (Gibson, Dudgeon, & Crockett, 2020). The theme, ‘For Our Elders’ reminds us of the deep connections that First Nations peoples have had to Country and culture for an unparalleled span of millennia. We pay homage to the work of Elders that have been, those today and those to come. 

(Nagurrgurrba, 2023)

Orange Sky’s work in connecting people doing it tough with everyday support and meaningful conversation is not new to these lands. For thousands of generations, Elders have used their roles as cultural knowledge holders, nurturers, advocates and leaders; to bring people together.

Today, Orange Sky continues to work with, learn from and be guided by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders. They are within our committees, on shifts and supporting communities in which we operate. The decisions and knowledge of Elders have shaped our work, particularly within remote communities where we operate 14 services, spanning across QLD, NT and WA.

(Nampijinpa Hudson, 2023)

Our Program Manager of Remote Services, Judith Meiklejohn, reflects on the role of Elders in her work. “We had been operating in Lockhart River for 10 months when I started working with Orange Sky in 2018. I remember setting up a community meeting to learn how the service was tracking. Elders in the community helped me understand that we needed to entirely rethink our remote service model,” Judith said. 

Judith attributes a great deal of Orange Sky’s growth in remote services, to the words and guidance of those Elders. Each of our current and new services works alongside local organisations, Traditional Owners and Elders to ensure we are providing positive and culturally safe connections within communities. 

“In my work, I have been fortunate to see the way that Elders thoughtfully consider age-old cultural protocols, whilst contemplating impacts several generations ahead. There is much that non-Indigenous people and organisations can and should learn from Elders,” Judith said.

(Nagurrgurrba, 2023)

The role of Elders cannot be understated. It is a crucial component of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities; for the betterment of all Australians. This NAIDOC Week, and beyond, we celebrate and thank the Elders who pave the way for a better future, for Orange Sky and our wider Australian community.



Gibson, C., Dudgeon, P. and Crockett, J. (2020) ‘Listen, look & learn: Exploring cultural obligations of elders and older Aboriginal people’, Journal of Occupational Science, 27(2), pp. 193–203. doi:10.1080/14427591.2020.1732228. 

Nagurrgurrba, I. (2023) KINGA – SALT WATER CROCODILE, Celebrating Indigenous design with Balarinji this NAIDOC Week. Canva. Available at: 

Nampijinpa Hudson, M. (2023) BUSH ONION DREAMING 2, Celebrating Indigenous design with Balarinji this NAIDOC Week. Canva. Available at: 

Nagurrgurrba, I. (2023) LONG NECKED TURTLE, Celebrating Indigenous design with Balarinji this NAIDOC Week. Canva. Available at: 

Find out more about Orange Sky’s ‘innovate’ RAP

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Learning from First Nations voices this Reconciliation Week and beyond

This Reconciliation Week, Orange Sky recognises the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices in our community and across all lands. This year’s focus – “Be a Voice for Generations” – deeply resonates with our passion for starting conversations around our orange vans and services. 

The theme of “Be a Voice for Generations” recognises the crucial role that each of us plays in advocating for justice and equity. At Orange Sky, we understand the importance of being heard. Our mission to ‘positively connect communities’ is more than access to free laundry services and warm showers. It is about creating safe and inclusive spaces to speak and be heard. On shifts, and in offices, across many lands of Australia, we connect with and learn from powerful Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices. 

Orange Sky’s work is strengthened by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across all sectors of our work. Our 37 services would not be where they are today without Orange Sky’s First Nations volunteers gifting their time, staff’s commitment, donors’ generosity, or our friend’s trust. 

This Reconciliation Week, we are grateful to learn from the voices of leaders and changemakers in our ecosystem. This includes Orange Sky Board Member and Dieri and Mithaka man, Keiron Lander. When asked about respectful engagement, Keiron told us, “respectful engagement is the commitment to having proper yarns with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people which is deeply rooted in laws and protocols. Now we can learn, because we are committed to learn,” Keiron said.

During the week, our staff also heard from Dr Tim White, Co-Director of RESET, learning about mental health in remote communities and for First Nations people. Orange Sky operates 13 remote services across Australia, one of which is in the North Queensland community of Aurukun. Our remote services are an integral part of providing access to Australia’s needing laundry and connection. Dr White shared with us that, “Humility is the foundation of all interactions with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and that is what Orange Sky brings to our community”.

With Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples representing three percent of the population, yet 20 percent of Australians experiencing homelessness (ABS, 2023), more work must be done. We recognise that disparities and reconciliation can only be addressed through “proper yarns” rooted in “humility” and respectful protocols, as outlined by Keiron and Dr White. Through our work and underpinned by our Reconciliation Action Plan, Orange Sky is committed to playing our part in improving access to laundry, and showers, as well as maintaining a culturally safe place to speak and be heard.

Find out more about Orange Sky’s ‘innovate’ RAP

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From donor to volunteer - Phil's impact at Orange Sky

Each year in May, we celebrate National Volunteer Week at Orange Sky. While we do our best to recognise the hard work and dedication of our volunteers year round, this week is the perfect opportunity to reflect on our wonderful vollies and the incredible impact they have in the community and the connections they’re building with our friends. And what better way to do that than by sharing some of their incredible stories?

Today, we’re turning to Phil who’s been volunteering at our Cannon Hill YMCA shift in Brisbane for the past eight months. Phil started his journey with Orange Sky as a donor, but since retiring as a medical director, he’s been able to join the team on the ground as one of our much-loved volunteers.

Behind the conversations, loads of laundry and laughs that Phil’s regular shift brings are stories of hardship that drive his desire to make an impact.

“It’s not just the clothes that people bring down [to shift]. If they find themselves in a house that doesn’t have a washing machine… they can’t put a big load on. We get a lot of sheets and doonas – that’s a big advantage for people to have clean bedding.

It’s easy for us [to say] ‘oh, just throw that in the wash’, but not if you don’t have that facility. It’s down to the laundromat, 14 bucks for a wash. And then if it’s a miserable day, then you’ve got to put it in the dryer and that’s another six or eight bucks. All of a sudden, that’s your food budget gone for half the week.”

Phil’s no stranger to volunteering, having previously done so overseas in countries like the Philippines and Kenya performing medical procedures. For Phil, volunteering, both in a medical capacity and as part of the Orange Sky team, really puts his life into perspective.

“You get to understand where you are in society and what you can do for society and what the true nature of your contribution to life can be. So I think it’s getting out of your bubble and being able to engage and then being able to see yourself reflected back.”

As Phil points out, Orange Sky is so much more than a laundry or shower service. Coming from a medical background, Phil also recognises the massive health advantages of the Orange Sky service. For many people doing it tough, it can often feel like they’re on their own, which can be incredibly isolating. Phil says, “… it’s not only the physical health benefits. It’s also the mental benefits knowing that someone is actually out there and is caring for you and is willing to be there.”

“We have one mum who just says she just loves coming down and knowing that someone will help her with her washing. She’s on her own and doesn’t have anyone to help her.”

Phil described having access to clean clothes, fresh bedding and a nice hot shower as a fundamental part of life. “… it’s about having clothes to wash and wear and having the capacity to have clean clothes and that reminds you that you’re still part of society.” 

And for anyone considering taking the plunge and signing up to volunteer with Orange Sky Phil says, “if it’s something that you feel that you can do, you should be engaged. We’ve got lots of people from different walks of life, who are employed, who get a day off here or day there and come along, and it’s fantastic.

Don’t do it to make yourself feel better, do it to engage with people around you and to really be part of your own community. I think that’s where you’ll find the greatest benefit.”

Interested in volunteering with Orange Sky?

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One Year Since Launching Our RAP - Here's What You Need to Know

It is the first anniversary of Orange Sky Australia’s ‘Innovate’ Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), and we wanted to take a moment to reflect on our progress and reaffirm our ongoing commitment to celebrating culture, acknowledging our shared history and improving the health and social outcomes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

We acknowledge the inequities that continue to exist in Australia, and that organisations like ours should not have to implement a RAP to address them. However, we remain steadfast in our belief that we can make a difference, and we are committed to doing our part to deliver the objectives of our RAP as a tangible mechanism for driving change within our communities.

So, where are we at with our RAP outcomes?

We are proud to say that 88% of our deliverables are completed or remain are on track, and we are committed to addressing the 12% of tasks that are yet to be completed in the next year of our plan.

RAP Working Group Chairperson, Jo Senz commented on her pride in the Orange Sky team’s approach to progressing the deliverables.

It has been a pleasure to see how earnestly and authentically our team have committed to reconciliation across all pillars of the organisation,” Jo said. 

“From the outset, it has been important for our team to acknowledge that reconciliation touches all aspects of our work. We wanted our team to make a difference, not only in remote communities or for our friends, but in every place we operate and every person we work alongside,” Jo continued. 

What have been the key highlights?

The expansion of our remote services has been a key highlight throughout the year. We have almost doubled our remote services since launching our RAP – now operating 12 services across Australia. Our new services include a further three in Northern Territory, three in Western Australia and one in Queensland. This growth is allowing us to reach more people in more places, and to provide support to communities that are often overlooked.

We have also made important progress in increasing the representation of First Nations people and voices in our community. 8% of our staff and 3% of our volunteers identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, as well as Dieri and Mithaka man, Keiron Lander, joining our board earlier this year.

Cultural learning is of significant importance for our friends on orange chairs to our staff throughout Australia. That is why we have provided several tailored cultural training opportunities for our staff, to ensure our team is equipped with the resources to facilitate safe and inclusive operations and policies. 


For true reconciliation to exist, it is evident that there is much more work to be done. In the context of homelessness, the recent Census reported that one in five people experiencing homelessness identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander (ABS, 2021); considerably higher than their non-Indigenous counterparts. We recognise that reconciliation is an ongoing journey. One that must amplify the strength, voices and aspirations of our First Nations communities. 

Orange Sky is committed to being open, honest and transparent about our progress while striving to make tangible change through our RAP. We would like to thank and acknowledge our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander friends, staff, board and committee members, volunteers, partners and supporters. Orange Sky community is strengthened by your voices and perspectives.

Find out more about Orange Sky’s ‘innovate’ RAP

Orange Sky's RAP

Washing, Yarning and Positively Connecting Communities in 2022

2022 saw eight years of washing, yarning and positively connecting communities here at Orange Sky, such an exciting milestone! But 2022 was also a stark reminder that our services are needed now more than ever. 

The last year for Orange Sky has been one in which the true character of the organisation has been tested. We have adapted, innovated, responded and done what we do best: help our friends in the community. March 2022 became our biggest month on record for impact and total number of people helped. We launched multiple new services, five of which are in remote communities. Our innovation team led multiple successful ventures, launching the Waru Dryer, RV3.0 and Laundromat of the Future.

But first and foremost, this impact would not have been possible without you, our community of supporters, who each play an important part in the ecosystem that is Orange Sky. So to wrap up the year, here are three key moments from three key sections of our community…..

Community Recovery

The devastating impacts of the March 2022 floods had been felt far and wide right across Qld and NSW communities, including Albion – home of Orange Sky HQ! Orange Sky worked hard to positively connect communities, supporting people with access to free mobile laundry, warm showers and genuine conversations right across Brisbane, Ipswich, Gympie and the Northern Rivers when life suddenly turned upside down. 

The unprecedented floods in Northern NSW left Jocelyn and her family from Mullumbimby devastated, losing around 80% of their belongings; a lot of which were clothes. Jocelyn told us the unlaundered pieces were too overwhelming to deal with, and the only option was to say goodbye to these belongings or get some help.  Orange Sky heard Jocelyn’s story and offered our services, transforming over 15 large containers and bags of flooded garments covered in mud and sewage into clean, good-as-new clothing.

“Jocelyn is an absolute superstar, such a beautiful person that I wish I met under better circumstances. We were so happy to relieve her of some of her tasks after the flooding, but more importantly give her a safe space to talk about her and her family’s experience over the past few weeks and be there for her when she needed it.” – Emma Duce, Orange Sky.

Biggest Month of Impact

March 2022 saw our BIGGEST month of impact to date, with Orange Sky completing over 10,000 washes for CRS and positively connecting 22,400 people during the financial year. This is all thanks to our staff and volunteers who poured endless amounts of passion, energy and time into supporting our community with free laundry, warm showers and genuine conversation. On top of our regular weekly shifts, Orange Sky has been committed to helping those impacted by flooding across Queensland and New South Wales. 


Bernie from the Australian Red Cross has seen first hand the impact our services are providing to communities in the most vulnerable of situations.

“It’s been a great help having Orange Sky here. People get two major elements of support. They can feel a sense of comfort from having clean and dry clothes. Plus they get some fresh air outside the evacuation centre and have a chat with the Orange Sky team. It’s made a difference.” – Bernie, Orange Sky service provider. 

Remote, Sustainability and Inclusivity

We launched new services – including four in remote communities (Aurukun, Yungngora, Yakanarra, Galiwin’ku) – and led a number of successful ventures, including vehicle upgrades that will allow our fleet to be more reliable, user-friendly and better for the environment. As an organisation, we are committed to being an ethical, sustainable and inclusive charity leader, and we’re proud to have a Reconciliation Action Plan.

Vivienne and her family are some of the friendly faces that visit our remote service in Maningrida, NT – run by Mala’la Health Services. In a region where laundry access is challenging, Vivienne shared how helpful it is to have her winter blankets washed and dried so her family can stay warm each night.

“Always so good to have Orange Sky come and wash the big blankets. They take maybe two days to dry but Orange Sky can do it quickly. They are very busy so it’s nice to have them come and wash for me and my sisters and my mum,” – Vivienne, Orange Sky Friend.📍Kunibídji Country.

Conversations happen every day of the year on our six orange chairs, and we want to make sure we can continue that over the holidays. Whether that be an opportunity for a friend who might be doing it tough to have a conversation, a volunteer who is potentially lonely or isolated being able to connect with a friend; or a load of laundry washed, every connection on our six orange chairs helps ease the load. We need to fund more than 1,600 shifts to support our friends over the Holiday period. With a gift of $288, you can provide an entire shift to help our community doing it tough get through the holiday season. 

Orange Sky thanks you for your continued support, and we look forward to sharing more conversations and connecting more Australian than ever before in 2023.

Help ease the load for our friends

Donate today

Rising cost of living impacting homelessness across the country

For people doing it tough or families struggling to make ends meet, the current economic climate is making it harder to get by. 

The release of Australia’s budget in October has predicted a decline in living standards over the next 12 months. Many Australian households are already feeling the impacts of rising costs of living, along with inflation at its highest rate since 1990 rising 7.3% in the past 12 months.

Research conducted by Orange Sky this year in partnership with YouGov, revealed that many Australians are currently facing financial hardship, with six in ten (59%) saying they struggle to make ends meet at least once a year and one in five (22%) who struggle each week. 

The impacts of these economic changes are felt hardest among vulnerable people and families in our community living on the poverty line, resulting in one in five (21%) Aussies having experienced homelessness, slightly up from 2021’s study which revealed 20% had experienced homelessness.

Additionally, the report also shed light on the impact of recent increases in the cost of living:

· Almost one in three (28%) feared losing their home due to financial struggles and one in four (25%) had to take on a secondary income to make ends meet.

· Of those who had previously experienced homelessness, six in 10 (59%) feared losing their home due to financial struggles and more than half (51%) took on a secondary income to get by.

· One in 10 (10%) say they struggled to make ends meet every day.

· Six in 10 (59%) experienced increased nervousness about their financial security in the past year.

· Almost half (49%) had to change their living circumstances due to rising costs.

Orange Sky Co-founder Nic Marchesi (OAM) said since 2014, Orange Sky has helped support the most vulnerable members of our community through the simple act of clean laundry, warm showers and most importantly genuine conversation when life takes an unexpected turn.

“Unfortunately, 2022 is already proving to be the toughest year many of us have faced,” he said.

“In the first six months of this year alone, we’ve seen everyday costs skyrocket, coupled with the ongoing pandemic and natural disasters like flooding across Queensland and New South Wales, it has created the perfect storm for homelessness and forced more Aussies to live paycheck-to-paycheck, making the support provided by Orange Sky more important than ever.

“When people experiencing homelessness stop by one of our vans, we wash their clothes and offer them a warm shower and it makes them feel better but they tell us that it’s the conversations our volunteers have with them they love the most.”

Orange Sky remains committed to supporting the increasing demand in our services for Australians experiencing hardship and homelessness. Each week, our legendary volunteers operate over 300 shifts around Australia, providing free access to laundry, warm showers and genuine conversations on orange chairs across Australia, allowing us to see the people and stories behind statistics.

It’s never been more important than now to provide support and help ease the load for those doing it tough.

Help ease the load for our friends

Donate today

Orange Sky partners with OMO to ‘lighten the load’ for families

In Australia, one in six children live below the poverty line and with the rising cost of living, it’s likely the number of families struggling to make ends meet will only continue to grow. 

As a result of this staggering statistic, families who are struggling to pay for essentials such as rent and food, school items like clean uniforms and sports clothes are luxuries that are often neglected from the priorities list. Sadly, this has a significant impact on a child’s ability to attend school with confidence and gain a solid education.

To lighten the load for families in need, Orange Sky is excited to be partnering with OMO to deliver ‘The Confidence Cycle’; an initiative that will support our mobile laundry and shower services in key school catchment areas across QLD and NSW.

This exciting partnership will ensure Aussie school kids can take on the school week with fresh, clean uniforms, washed and dried for free at an Orange Sky shift.

Orange Sky volunteer Lyndal Lowth from Cairns says “I have been volunteering with Orange Sky for three years and have connected with a number of young families. I have often chatted to children on shift and they have told me that they weren’t able to go to school that day because they didn’t have any clean clothes.”

“Some of these families have shared that they see education as a priority for their kids – we’ve seen parents waiting at our shift locations from 4:30am to be first in line for our 8am shift so their children’s school uniforms can be washed and dried ready for a school day.”

Lorna Ash, General Manager, Homecare Australia and New Zealand at Unilever said that OMO was proud to be partnering with Orange Sky on this significant partnership.

“With the cost of living continuing to rise, many Aussie families are doing it tough at the moment. Our aim in partnering with Orange Sky is to lighten the load for these families in a small but important way, ensuring that Aussie kids have access to clean uniforms and the confidence they bring.,” said Ms Ash.

Orange Sky Co-Founder and CEO, Lucas Patchett added that clean clothes and showers can make a massive difference to someone’s day, but what makes Orange Sky’s services so impactful is the hours of genuine, non-judgemental conversation and connection that take place between their volunteers and the friends accessing their services each and every day. 

“Since launching Orange Sky, I’ve seen people in some really tough situations, including young families whose kids weren’t in school due to not having clean uniforms,” Lucas said. 

“Not only does Orange Sky provide an essential service, but it also offers a safe, welcoming, and non-judgemental place and thanks to our friends at OMO, we’re going to be able to continue to grow our services and reach more people in need.”

Our mission is to create a safe, positive and supportive environment for people experiencing homelessness who are often ignored or feel disconnected from the community. Currently Orange Sky operates 52 services – which is made up of predominantly laundry and shower vans, and a mix of semi-mobile and permanent sites – in 32 locations across Australia, and 4 services in 3 locations in New Zealand, offering endless hours of conversation facilitated by a team of passionate volunteers. 

OMO is proudly supporting Orange Sky’s services in three locations across Australia; Newcastle, Beenleigh and Cairns. Shifts within these areas that are specifically operating within school catchment regions include:

  • Newcastle, NSW – Catholic Care Hamilton South, 29 Fowler Street, Hamilton South, New South Wales, 2303 
  • Beenleigh, QLD – Hugh Muntz Park, Reisers Road, Beenleigh, QLD, 4207 
  • Cairns, QLD – Cairns Villa and Leisure Park, 28 Pease St, Manoora, Queensland, 4870 

Thank you to OMO for allowing Orange Sky to positively connect more communities and providing a boost of confidence to kids across Australia!

Don’t change clothes, change lives! The Sudsy Challenge is BACK

When Nic and Lucas fitted out the first van with washers and dryers back in 2014, they never could have imagined the incredible impact that Orange Sky would have on countless Australians experiencing homelessness. The Sudsy Challenge is our annual fundraising initiative and was created so more everyday Aussies could get involved in our mission to ‘positively connect communities’.

Who is Sudsy, you ask?

‘Sudsy’ is Orange Sky’s first mobile laundry van, which was built in a Brisbane garage by Co-Founders, Nic and Lucas, at the age of 20. It took three days – and three sets of washing machines – to get the first van working and operational, which inspired the three-day Sudsy Challenge. 

The Sudsy Challenge is back in 2022 to raise much needed funds and awareness for Orange Sky. We challenge you to wear the same clothes for three days in a row, sparking conversations about homelessness in Australia and the importance of providing access to free laundry, warm showers, and genuine connection for our friends doing it tough. 

With more Sudsy Challengers on board, our ability to provide friends with a safe space to access our services increases. We want to see as many Orange Sky vans driving around the country as possible, fitted out with washing machines, dryers and six orange chairs – so we need your help! 

The Sudsy Challenge is more than just repeating an outfit. It’s about educating people on the current state of homlessness, and helping to wash away some of the stigmas surrounding homelessness. It is about creating a safe and positive environment for people who feel disconnected from their community. This September, we’re asking you not to change clothes. Instead, wear the same outfit for three days and help change the lives of our friends doing it tough.

How can you get involved? 

Pick one of the three C’s – Challenger, Cheerleader or Contributor. 


If you’re interested in taking part in The Sudsy Challenge, sign up via our website, start those conversations and get fundraising! You can sign up solo, in a pair, or in a group! Once you’ve reached the $24 milestone, you will receive your very own Sudsy t-shirt in the mail to wear during the challenge. We know life is busy, so we’ve made sure you have the option to pick any three days in September to do the challenge. 


Where would our Challengers be without their Cheerleaders? Get ready to support your challenger when they need it, whether it be a simple pat on the back, a shout out on your social media page or sharing their fundraising page in your group chat. Speak up to support your mate as they #KeepTheirKitOn and help spark those important conversations about homelessness in Australia.


Another way to support Orange Sky is to donate to a Challenger. Just $24 provides a friend doing it tough with access to free laundry and a warm shower, and allows our volunteers to provide connection for those who need it most.

We encourage you to get creative when rocking your Sudsy t-shirt, and we can’t wait to see what you get up to in your orange kit. Remember, conversation and connection underpins what we do at Orange Sky, so don’t be afraid to have some life-changing chats.

Talk to your community about why you’ve chosen to take on the challenge. Share your #SudsyChallenge experience with your Instagram or Facebook followers, or even vlog your day in the orange for Tiktok! Whatever your style is, we’re excited to see how you get the word out. 

When you take on The Sudsy Challenge, you’re committing to much more than just wearing a t-shirt for three days. You’re contributing to a nation-wide movement to start the conversation about homelessness, so we can continue to provide support to Aussies doing it tough.