By Sean Ryan - 06 February, 2016
Irish actor Cillian Murphy has been announced as the campaign ambassador for Radio Nova’s 2016 ‘Help Our Homeless Radiothon’ in aid of Focus Ireland which takes place later this month.
The event is a live, on-air pledge drive which aims to raise €40,000 to help fund Focus Ireland’s work to tackle and prevent homelessness in the greater Dublin area; it will take place live on Radio Nova on 17 – 18 February.
The actor has teamed up with Radio Nova for the two-day event which will see the Dublin station turn over its airwaves to raise €40,000 from donations from the public and local businesses.
A special call centre will be set-up at Radio Nova’s HQ in the Dublin docklands with Focus Ireland staff manning the phones to accept donations during the 48 hours charity pledge drive.
According to John O’Haire from Focus Ireland “Nova’s Radiothon represents an urgent appeal for donations to help Focus Ireland’s vital work to help those who are homeless and who are at risk of homelessness.”
He added, “The campaign is timely as for the first time, more than 5,000 people across Ireland are homeless. This includes more than 700 families and over 1,600 children across the country.”
Cillian Murphy has supported the work of Focus Ireland, a charity founded by Sr Stanislaus Kennedy in 1985, on several occasions for many years.
Speaking ahead of the event, the Cork native said, “Homelessness is a problem that is very, very visible in our cities around the country and you can’t really escape it so it’s something that I thought I’d help out with.”
“The Radiothon is a great idea, very proactive and that’s the kinda thing I like to support. It’s hard to imagine what it’s like not to have a home but that’s the reality facing hundreds of families with children, individuals and young people across Ireland.”
“Homelessness has a terrible impact on people’s lives, especially on the lives of children. We can all play our part and help by supporting the Radio Nova Radiothon which will raise money for Focus Ireland who are working hard to support families and individuals during this incredibly stressful time.”
This is the second year of Radio Nova’s ‘Help Our Homeless Radiothon’, which raised over €30,000 in just two days in 2015.
CEO of Radio Nova, Kevin Branigan, said the station intends to build on that success this year by increasing its self-imposed target by almost 50% to €40,000.
“We were overwhelmed by the phenomenal support our listeners showed last year to help us raise money for this vital cause. Sadly, the homeless crisis has deepened over the past 12 months and we will now hold another Radiothon to help Focus Ireland meet the increasing demand for their services,” he said.
“We are delighted to have Cillian on board with us this year. We are confident that, like last year, our 150,000 listeners will not be found wanting and make this year’s event even bigger and better than ever in 2016.”
John O’Haire, Dublin Area Services Manager from Focus Ireland commented, “Our staff are working hard to support these families and everyone that comes into our services every day but we really depend on donations to raise vital funds to make sure our services can cope with the rising demand.
“Every day Focus Ireland is changing the lives of hundreds of people who are struggling; people who are rough sleeping, and families that are squeezed into one room in emergency accommodation.”
“With the support of Radio Nova’s listeners we can help even more people. Every donation will help us to directly support those who have lost their homes and also help fund our work to prevent others from becoming homeless in the first place.”
Radio Nova which broadcasts to Dublin, Kildare, Meath and Wicklow on FM and Focus Ireland are now calling on the public to support the ‘The Help Our Homeless Radiothon’ on Wednesday 17th and Thursday 18th February.
From funds raised, Focus Ireland will receive 89 cent out of every euro received going directly towards frontline homelessness services.