Press Release Monday September 17th
Austerity too much for some – Archbishop Martin launches Crosscare 2012 Appeal
The Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin has said the burden of austerity can prove too much for some people in our society. Speaking at the launch of Crosscare’s annual appeal Archbishop Martin said “Austerity for many has meant having to cutback and learn to live with less. For those who were already struggling and finding it difficult to cope, the burden can be too much.” (full text attached)
Crosscare is the social care agency of the Archdiocese of Dublin providing help to those most in need in need. Archbishop Martin launched their annual appeal and officially opened one of their latest projects in Wellington Street in Dublin city centre (today 4pm).
This particular Crosscare service supports young adults, most of whom are separated from their families and who have just left the foster care or residential care system at the age of 18. Some of those using the service arrived in Ireland in recent years as unaccompanied minors/separated children.
Crosscare provides somewhere for these young people to meet every day, to study, to cook, to meet friends or to engage with a support worker. 11 of the young people in the project have secured scholarships for third level education. Crosscare is also providing space in this new unit for local community groups as well as an after school service. Crosscare Director Conor Hickey said this project was really having an impact on the lives of these young adults – but cutbacks and a fall in donations continued to make it extremely difficult for them to keep all projects going.
Archbishop Martin, who asked parishioners to support Crosscare in the collection at Masses next weekend, said “For those whose current vulnerability places them in a situation of precariousness cutbacks for them or would be devastating.” He added, “The voluntary sector, to which Crosscare belongs, is not simply a substitute when public services are restricted. The voluntary sector brings its own special contribution to social protection and development. Crosscare represents what is best in the voluntary sector, carefully controlling its expenditure while opening new paths and new areas which are not being served.”
Meanwhile, another Crosscare service – the Migrant Project – launching a report today on emigration to the UK identified unemployment, addiction, mental health problems, and debt as just some of the issues young Irish people are presenting with to welfare and homeless services in London. And according to these services the number presenting in recent years has increased.
Statistics obtained as part of the report found that the number of new Irish rough sleepers in London jumped from 43 in 2010 to 79 in 2011.
The short report is available at www.migrantproject.ie and outlines a number of case studies.
Notes to editors:
- Crosscare is the social care agency of the Archdiocese of Dublin providing support to those most in need for over 70 years.
Last year Crosscare:
- Provided over 150 beds for homeless men and women in Dublin every night in their shelters around the city.
- Provided 220,000 meals in their food centres and homeless services.
- Provided over 8,000 hours for the wellbeing of older people living alone.
- Dealt with over 3,750 migration queries.
- Dealt with over 3,000 queries for Housing and Welfare and information services