SVP UCD raised over 4000 euro from collections during Homeless Week last week, although they have not yet finished counting their donations, so they do not yet have an exact figure for the amount raised. The Tribune spoke to Vice Auditor of the society Chris Glynn about the success of the week-long awareness campaign.
‘About 10 people slept out on average on Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday. However, as Thursday was the last night we had about 35-40 people sleeping out, which was a fantastic show of support.’
‘On Monday we had our launch night. This was attended by the auditor who set up Homeless Week 10 years ago as well as representatives from the charities Merchants Quay, Focus & Inner City Helping Homeless. Each of these representatives spoke about the Homeless Crisis in the current day as well as the specific needs that each of the charities catered to in the context of homelessness. It was great to gain an understanding of how the various charities in Dublin work together to provide structured, reliable services and how UCDSVP can work with them, but the talk also gave massive perspective on the severity of the Crisis at the moment.’
‘On Tuesday during the day, we were paid a visit by our honorary mascots, Setanta & Toby, two of the most fantastic puppers you could ever lay your eyes on. These were brought along by their owner (Rachael Ní Benéid) and were a massive crowd pleaser. In the afternoon, we had a Café Croissant with French Soc on the concourse (in front of the library) which brought massive numbers to the stand and some much-needed pastries.’
‘That evening, we had a panel discussion that centred around what students can do to help tackle the crisis. This was extremely enlightening and encouraging, leading to a multitude of new suggestions in terms of what UCDSVP can do to help. The panel hosted representatives from Focus, Take Back the City as well as some of the experts on Social Policy within UCD.’
‘After the panel, the illustrious David Keenan kindly played a gig in The Clubhouse in order to raise funds for our efforts. This event was a huge success & our biggest of the week, with about 80-90 people in attendance. Not only did David play a fantastic set but he was also extremely engaged with the issues and encouraged all those that were in attendance to get involved with the charity. Afterwards, he stuck around, talked to & took pictures with anyone who so wished. All in all, it was a fantastic night & a great gig for which we are forever indebted to David for. It was well appreciated by all in attendance.’
‘On Wednesday, DanceSoc organised a flashmob on the Concourse which was a great show of support and a real showstopper. We were paid a visit by SUBSET, the street art collective, who held a discussion on their current project which centres around homelessness. We also held an event in conjunction with FoodSoc, entitled BYO Baked Goods, in which everyone brought along something sweet and shared it with everyone else. It was just as wholesome as it sounds.’
On Thursday, we finished up the week with an Open Mic in The Clubhouse. It was a chill night which included riveting performances of hits such as Smash Mouth’s “All Star”.
Afterwards, we all retired to our evening quarters, that is, the Concourse. As I mentioned, we had quite a crowd the last night, so it was a very enjoyable night.
Of course, on top of all this, we had the Sleep Out every night which is an event in itself, so there was always a crowd around and always a good buzz. The stand was manned 24/7, there was always at least one person in attendance (awake or asleep) but for the vast majority of the week, there was at least 3 or 4 at the booth. About 10 people slept out on average on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. However, as Thursday was the last night we had about 35-40 people sleeping out, which was a fantastic show of support.
All in all, the week was a huge success!
UCD SVP’s ‘Generositree’ Christmas Appeal returns this year.
The project will launch on Wednesday the 21st of November and will be collecting presents for children living in emergency accommodation this Christmas.
It’s very simple to donate. Find one of the present collection points, the decorated ‘Generositrees’, in the Sports Centre, the Student Centre, the Sutherland Law Building, the Newman Building or the Global Lounge. Take a tag from the Generositree that specifies a child’s age. Purchase a gift appropriate for the age you choose. Leave the present, with tag attached, underneath one of the Generositrees.
The presents donated by students may be the only gifts that some children receive this Christmas, so please considering donating. Last year, UCD SVP aimed to collect presents for 140 children and received over double that number. SVP members hope to match the great success of last year’s project this year.
By Chris Glynn – SVP UCD Vice Auditor & Muireann O’Shea – CoEditor