First published: 2017-12-01 16:25:07
Ho, ho, ho, - the President of Drogheda Chamber of Commerce Paddy Callaghan and Drogheda Homeless Aid Manager Maureen Ward at the launch of the charity’s annual Christmas sleep out which takes place on Saturday 9th December.
The annual Sleep Out is one of the biggest fundraisers of the year for Drogheda Homeless Aid and this year in particular with homelessness consistently making the headlines the organisers are hoping for huge support.
This year’s Sleep Out is to be held on Saturday 9th December 2017, when20 hardy individuals will sleep out on West Street for a night to support the vital work of Drogheda Homeless Aid.
Joining the Sleep Out this year will be the President of Drogheda Chamber of Commerce Paddy Callaghan who is the founder of one of Drogheda’s most successful companies, Nature’s Best, which currently employs 300 people.
'Like most people I take many things in life for granted but I know I have been very fortunate to have a roof over my head and a comfortable bed every night of my life – sometimes you have to go without something to really appreciate it “ Paddy told Drogheda Life.
“The weekend of December 9th & 10th will be a very different experience, unforgettable and a real eye opener – no hotel reservation, no passport or flight boarding card needed – instead at best a sleeping bag or a few hours in a big cardboard box. I am not looking forward to it but I do want to have that experience myself’.
The Manager of Drogheda Homeless Aid, Maureen Ward, said: “The image of homelessness that some people have unfortunately is that it is a phenomenon confined to Dublin; but it is a reality here in Louth and the problem is not going away” she said.
“Drogheda Homeless Aid supported 120 individuals in their emergency accommodation facility in the past year. All of those residing in Drogheda Homeless Aid get resettlement support to help them back towards independent living and is one of the most important aspects of the work that we do in endeavouring to break the cycle of homelessness.”
Maureen is delighted that Paddy Callaghan is doing the Sleep Out on 9th of December. He will be joined by other business people, including Dave Kavanagh of Financial Companion, Fr. Barry Matthews and teachers from a number of local secondary schools.
Financial services company State Street is once again backing the Sleep Out, several of their employees are participating in the event and the company is to match any funding they raise.
In 2016, Drogheda Homeless Aid prepared nearly 14,000 hot meals for residents, former residents and for older people in the greater Drogheda area.
Drogheda Homeless Aid is also an approved housing body and currently manages five properties and provides transitional and long-term housing for people exiting homelessness.
Volunteers for this year’s Sleep Out in Aid of Drogheda Homeless Aid pictured at the launch. Back row, from left: Dave Kavanagh, Lal Kavanagh, Brian Kerr, Fr. Barry Matthews, Paul Fennelly, Front: Anne White, Maureen Ward, Paddy Callaghan, Paul Murphy, Tanya Adair.