Charity helped "several" homeless newborn babies in Dublin last year
Homeless figures in Ireland recently reached another record high.
The Salvation Army has revealed it accommodated an extra 100 homeless people a night in Dublin in 2021 compared to the previous year.
According to its 2021 annual report, the church and charity put a roof over the heads of 500 people each evening across its six services in the capital.
The report also said it supported 125 families through homelessness, providing 38,000 meals at its three family hubs in Coolock, Crumlin, and Harold's Cross.
Several newborn babies were among those helped by The Salvation Army, while the eldest service user was aged 71.
“On any given night, we can have up to 500 people across our six services in Dublin, as we work with our statutory funders, the Dublin Region Homeless Executive (DRHE) and Health Service Executive,” said Regional Manager Neil McKittrick.
“We continue to support a range of individuals and families across our services. We do all we can to prepare them for their return to the community.
“Some are only with us a short time; some longer. We always have people moving on and new residents moving in, so the actual number of people we support is higher than that.”
In two of The Salvation Army’s three adult and emergency centres in Dublin, 149 men were supported, 16 of whom progressed to independent living.
In the third, the Granby Centre on Granby Row, over 69,000 meals were provided in 2021.
“Like everyone who works to support vulnerable people, our universal position is that we strive so that, one day, the services we provide will not be needed,” said McKittrick.
“However, as long as people need our support, we will do all we can to support them.
"Hopefully, homeless figures will reduce, and we can play our part in making that happen.”
The Salvation Army is asking people to support its Christmas appeal to ensure it "remains in place to care for anyone who is hungry, lost or alone".
People are able to donate to the appeal at this link.