More than 500 people, including close to 200 children, in the west of Ireland are having to live in emergency accommodation, with the west the only region of the State to show an increase in the number of those homeless.
This is according to The Simon Community which has launched its Closing The Door On Homelessness campaign. It said the homeless and accommodation crisis in the west was "acute" with 534 people, including 199 children, in emergency accommodation in hotels, hostels and B&Bs at the end of June.
The charity, which is also marking its 50th anniversary this year, pointed out that, while the overall homeless figure in the State decreased in June, the west of Ireland actually saw a rise in the numbers.
The Closing The Door On Homelessness campaign will seek to tell the stories of people Simon has supported. Simon clients will be sharing their experiences of the safety and security of closing their own front door behind them". In 2018, the charity helped more than 2,400 people out of homelessness across the State. The charity also hopes to raise awareness of the experience of homelessness and its work in finding people homes.
“For 50 years the Simon Communities have supported those experiencing homelessness to find a place that they can call home," said Karen Golden of the Galway Simon Community. "The end goal remains the same today as it was in 1969, ‘making home a reality’. We continue to protect those who are at their most vulnerable and help them change the course of their lives by providing the physical door to a home of their own. We are helping people to close the door on the mental strain of homelessness, on fear, insecurity, addiction or ill-health.”
For more information see www.galwaysimon.ie