Ireland’s homeless crisis has made national headlines in the past week, after the death of three people around the country in the space of a week. According to figures by Focus Ireland, a record 7.941 people are without a home in Ireland – 5,046 adults and 2,895 children.
If you find yourself homeless or fear that you may lose your home, what can you do? According to Citizens Information, you should “contact your local authority to access accommodation”, with specialist housing services available for those in Dublin and Cork.
A number of voluntary organisations also receive funding to provide temporary accommodation and information services, such as the Simon Community, Focus Ireland, St. Vincent de Paul, the Capuchin Day Centre, Depaul, The Salvation Army, Peter McVerry Trust, Merchants Quay Ireland and Threshold.
If you’re in a position to help, your time, money or skills could help make a big difference to the lives of those in Ireland without a home of their own.
Fundraise – Hold a bake sale, do a sponsored cycle or host a coffee morning in aid of one of Ireland’s homeless charities.
Volunteer – Whether full-time or part-time, put your skills to good use by serving food, assessing needs or cooking meals.
Donate – If you’re short on time, make a one-off or regular financial donation. Some organisations also accept donations of goods such as clothing, toiletries or food.
Lobby – Get in touch with your local councillors and TDs, and ask them what they’re doing to alleviate the crisis, whether in terms of support for voluntary services or the provision of social housing. Call, write, email and visit them in person – keep the pressure on.
Legacy – Leave something behind in your will, whether a specific amount, a certain item, or a percentage of your estate.