Over 300 sleeping bags are being handed over today to Dublin’s homeless people sleeping rough on the streets of the city.
The sleeping bags were provided by young people from the Dublin suburb of Castleknock for the Peter McVerry Trust to ensure rough sleepers had sufficient stocks to last over the Christmas period.
The handover was organised by Localise, an NGO which engages with young people through its “giveback” programme, in association with Halfords, the retail chain. Forty members of Castleknock Localise branch raised €2,000 locally to help in funding the sleeping bags.
Localise Director Derek Cleary said: “The average timespan of a sleeping bag is six weeks. The figures for rough sleepers this time last year was 139 but I have no doubt sadly that this number has increased. By providing new sleeping bags now we can at least go some small way to ensure rough sleepers are warm coming up to and during Christmas.”
The Castleknock Localise members formed a human chain to illustrate solidarity with the homeless when handing over the sleeping bags to the Peter McVerry Trust..
Mr Cleary added: “Giving back can be the way forward in 2014 and our young people are very aware of their responsibility in community involvement and helping those in need.”