The DCU St.Vincent De Paul society (SVP) held their annual 24 hour sleep out on campus last Tuesday to raise awareness about the homelessness epidemic in Ireland.
The members of the SVP society staged their sleep out just outside the Henry Grattan building at noon on Tuesday and stayed until noon the following day.
The members who participated had only a sleeping bag and sleeping mat with them and could not bring or eat any of their own food during the sleep out. They had to rely solely on the kindness of others to donate food as well as donations for the charity.
The event, which raised €1,500 last year, is hoping to raise over €2,000 which will go directly into the society’s efforts to work with the homeless community in Dublin city centre.
The chairperson of the DCU SVP, Aoife Ní Shiadháil, who participated in the sleep out explained that the aim of the event is to raise awareness about homelessness while also giving the members the opportunity to experience the arduous task that many people living on the streets have to face every day.
“Our volunteers are bravely stepping into the shoes of a homeless person to experience the gruelling reality of their world for 24 hours. We hope to bring this grave issue to the attention of the DCU community as the problem is definitely not going away.”
Head supervisor of the bi-weekly soup runs organised by the SVP, Aisling Bourke described how she joined in first year and found it both a very rewarding experience and a great way to meet new likeminded people.
The SVP conduct soup runs every Sunday and Friday at 7pm. Anyone who wants to get involved or is interested in further information can contact their Facebook page or use the twitter hashtag #DCUSVP.