On Friday October 13, Shine A Light sleep out will be hosted in aid of Focus Ireland. With almost 6,500 people in emergency accommodation across Dublin including 2, 841 children (June 2023), the demand for Focus Ireland’s services is at an all-time high.
This year, media personality Brendan Courtney launched the event, along with Focus Ireland ambassadors Kelly Ann Byrne and Stephanie Clarke.
There are currently 1,839 families including children in emergency accommodation throughout Ireland as of July 2023, an increase of 29pc on last year.
The work that Focus Ireland is doing to support families experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness is vital, but they can’t do it alone and the support of people across the country is essential to create real change. Bord Gáis Energy formed a partnership in support of the homeless charity in 2015. To date, it has supported over 7,000 families and directly prevented 458 vulnerable families from becoming homeless in Ireland. Last year, the partnership was extended until 2025 and Bord Gáis has pledged a further €2m to help tackle family homelessness, bringing its total commitment in funds to €4.4m.
On the night, celebrity Brendan will sleep out at his home and will document the experience on his social channels. Other well-known personalities taking part in Shine A Light include broadcaster and writer Louise McSharry, former Tipperary hurler Brendan Maher, farming influencer Katie Gleeson and lifestyle influencer Caroline Mooney.
Speaking at the launch of the campaign, Brendan Courtney stated: “The latest figures show that homelessness profoundly impacts our society. There are thousands of families across Ireland, including children who are homeless or at risk of losing their homes and we need to come together and help combat this issue. By hosting your own sleepout at home, at your workplace, local sports club or community hall, we can raise vital funds for Focus Ireland and prevent more families from becoming homeless. The goal this year is to raise €1.2m and I am urging everyone to sign up and donate to this important cause.”
Speaking on behalf of Focus Ireland, Kelly Ann Byrne said: “Every night thousands of people are facing the uncertainty and fear of having nowhere to call home. Having experienced firsthand the work of Focus Ireland in supporting families to rebuild their lives, I urge you to gather your friends, family or colleagues and host your own sleep out to raise vital funds for Focus Ireland. With your support, together we can end homelessness.”
Signing up to Shine A Light is quick and easy to do. Simply visit shinealight.focusireland.ie to register and select whether you’re sleeping out as an individual or as part of a group. Host your own sleep out event and rally your supporters by encouraging them to join your sleep out or donate to your fundraising page.
Be a part of Shine A Light and sleep out against homelessness.
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