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Food banks and other Catholic social services remain operational in Dublin

By Cian Molloy - 12 April, 2020

“I am extremely proud of the way the team in Crosscare have responded to the crisis,” said Conor Hickey, director of Crosscare.

The social services arms of the Dublin Diocese remain in operation throughout the crisis, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin

Crosscare team members preparing food parcels for distribution to needy families. (Pic Dublin Archdiocese)

has reported.

The archbishop recently paid tribute Crosscare and Accord Dublin staffers and volunteers who are maintaining services thanks to their creativity and concern.

Crosscare’s help includes care of the homeless and emergency food support, while Accord Dublin is providing online relationship counselling.

“I am extremely proud of the way the team in Crosscare have responded to the crisis,” said Conor Hickey, the charity’s director.

He says that from very early in the crisis, priorities were established and resources concentrated on keeping key services open.

“Good contingency planning and regular communication with all staff and volunteers has meant that the staff group remain united and morale is generally as good as can be expected under these trying circumstances,” he said.

“While some of our face to face services have had to be adapted to meet HSE requirements, as much as possible we are continuing to provide supports through other remote means including phone and web based technologies.”

Crosscare services currently in operation include:

  • Services to homeless people, including the Crosscare residential facility for young people.
  • Crosscare now manages, at the request of the HSE, an extra 100 bed facility in the city centre, which is designed to cocoon vulnerable people out of existing overcrowded homeless services.
  • Food banks remain open to support those most in need. Some changes have been made at a local level to help safeguard the health of all involved.
  • Additional food parcels are being delivered to families and individuals across Dublin city.
  • Community cafes remain open, but now provide takeaway services to protect the health of customers.
  • All youth services are being offered through telephone and online support platforms.
  • The Drugs and Alcohol Programme team are carrying out online sessions with their clients.
  • Crosscare’s information and advocacy services ‘remain very busy’, but with all services now being offered by phone and email.

Meanwhile, Accord Dublin has announced a new helpline number for people struggling with relationship issues: 01 9059555.

The agency says many people are finding that relationship issues are coming to a head during this continuing period of self isolation. The helpline is open from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. every Monday to Friday.

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