HOMELESS parents in Ireland are turning up to late-night food-handout queues with their newborn babies, a volunteer group in Dublin has revealed.
Denise Carroll, one of the founders of The Homeless Street Cafe, a homeless charity based in the Irish capital, say the crisis is only worsening as more and more parents with newborns are arriving looking for food and supplies.
"We have newborn babies being brought here or their parents are coming here to get them things they can’t afford," Denise told the Irish Mirror.
"We try to have nappies and wipes but we are being asked more and more now for nappies and wipes and drinks.
"They are in big demand.
"People don’t realise that this is a support service, people can’t survive on what they have right now.
"They have no proper cooking facilities in their temporary accommodation so they come in here for a hot meal.
"And then we have parents maybe getting a school lunch for the next day or treats for their child for during the week. These are extra supports for them.
"Yes they have allowances and accommodation but they don’t have facilities to cook properly and there are costs of travelling to schools. It all adds up.
"That’s the reality of it."
The Homeless Street Cafe is run by volunteers and survives solely on donations from the public.
They operate out o Grafton Street in Dublin and try to provide homeless people in the area with hot meals, clothes, and drinks every Tuesday night.
Last month they brought to the attention of the nation the plight of Sam, a young homeless boy who was pictured eating a meal off a sheet of cardboard.
Jodie Dempsey, a 12-year-old girl from Co. Meath who is helping the group spoke of how the growing homeless crisis prompted her to join the cause.
"It is so sad. It is just the saddest thing, I can’t believe this is happening," she said.
"I see children in town with us all the time, I was just feeling so bad when I saw them."