News & Events
Peter McVerry Trust published its annual report for 2015 in Dublin this afternoon. The homeless and housing charity has reported that participant engagements across its services rose by 89% in 2015.
Speaking at the publication of the report Pat Doyle, CEO of Peter McVerry Trust, said “Last year was our busiest on record as the need for homeless services grew week after week. Peter McVerry Trust sought to respond as best we could to that growing need and by year end, we had seen 8,467 participant engagements across our services, up 89% on 2014.”
“During 2015 Peter McVerry Trust increased service capacity right across the board. The charity opened new homeless residential services, helping to create much needed additional bed capacity for the sector. In Kildare a new information and advice freephone service became operational and in Dublin we created Ireland’s first Homeless Youth Café.”
“We also succeeded in helping 171 young people move into their own homes, which is the largest number we have achieved in a single year. The overall number supported in our housing services rose by 40% during 2015. This was achieved because of the major efforts that Peter McVerry Trust is making to prioritise housing provision, enabling us to create more pathways out of homelessness. It was particularly pleasing for us to open 3 major housing projects last year that brought vacant public housing back into the housing system.”
Mr Doyle said that the charity is asking the Minister for Housing, Simon Coveney TD to take a strong, proactive approach to the issue of vacant private housing stock in order to increase housing supply. “Local authorities took a very assertive approach to reducing their vacant stock and increased supply at a crucial time. Now, we need to see an aggressive approach to empty private homes. It is an affront to the thousands of people in homelessness that they should attempt to live their lives in emergency accommodation, B&Bs and hotels while so many homes are allowed to lay empty across the State. Peter McVerry Trust believes that it is essential that the Minister moves quickly and effectively to bring these units back into residential use through a major programme of compulsory purchases.”
“The recently published figures on private rental and student accommodation costs underline the critical need for the Minister to bring forward legislation to link rents to the consumer price index. Unless measures are brought forward to tackle the root cause of accommodation costs and restrain price rises there will be widespread and long lasting consequences for both the economy and wider society.”
Concluding Mr Doyle said that the housing action plan now needed to hit every target in full and on time. “Given the scale of the homeless crisis and the continuing supply shortage we need to make sure the momentum the Minister has created continues to drive forward the action plan to hit each action, deadline and objective on time. Peter McVerry Trust will offer its full support to the Minister, his Department and other key stakeholders to ensure we move people out of homelessness and into their own homes as quickly as possible.
4,705 unique individuals across its services in 2015.
8,427 participant engagements across all services marking an increase of 89% on the previous year. (This reflects intensive supports with clients accessing multiple services)
31 – Average age of client group.
Reflecting Peter McVerry Trust’s history and capacity to support people with complex needs the three main issues after homelessness were drug use, family breakdown and mental health.
149,000 Meals were provide in 2015.
3,847 residential placements provided via emergency homeless accommodation services.
88% increase in the number of placements in Peter McVerry Trust’s emergency accommodation.
1,461 individuals supported in the Open Access service, an increase of 38%.
25 children and 14 adults supported in the family service open in late 2015.
Overall capacity in our homeless services increased by 23% last year.
Three new emergency accommodation services were opened in 2015:
An 11 bed emergency accommodation service was opened in September in Phibsboro in Dublin.
Two services opened in December, an 18 bed service in the city centre was opened to provide accommodation during the cold weather months and a family service with 12 family suites in north Dublin.
The cold weather initiative Peter McVerry Trust added 18 additional beds. This brought the organisation’s cold weather capacity to 59 beds for winter 2015.
Peter McVerry Trust opened a further 26 apartments, offering homeless people accommodation for life bringing the total number of apartments at year end to 132.
40% Increase in the number of participants supported in housing by Peter McVerry Trust in 2015
Peter McVerry Trust supported 171 people to exit homelessness from its homeless and other residential services.
A total 35 individuals where accommodated in the emergency homeless accommodation during 2015.
The Out of Hours Information & Advice Freephone Number, operated on behalf of Kildare County Council since September 2015, received 35 calls involving 47 individuals.
14 individuals who contacted the information and freephone service were in need of immediate emergency support to access accommodation, and Peter McVerry Trust ensured placed were secured.
Drug Treatment Services
767 individuals supported in Peter McVerry Trust’s stabilisation services an increase of 162% in service activity.
Across all participants supported by Peter McVerry Trust in 2015, 81% had a current or past history of drug misuse.
The Residential Community Detox service provided support to 78 individuals admitted to the service seeking support to detox from methadone or to participate in the residential cannabis cessation programme.
A total of 56 people were provided with accommodation placements in 2015 via the organisation’s drug free aftercare service.
U18s Residential Accommodation
In 2015, Peter McVerry Trust’s U18’s Services provided 25 residential placements.
Aftercare support was offered to a further 31 young people who have moved on from Peter McVerry Trust’s care.