Transition Year students accompanied by Robert Mathews and the Legion of Mary have been out on the streets of Dublin each week, delivering food they made and much needed clothing to homeless of Dublin City Centre. This is a challenging, yet rewarding experience for each of them – read one student’s reflection below:
American politician Jan Schakowsky once said: “There is a lot that happens around the world we cannot control. We cannot stop earthquakes, we cannot prevent droughts, and we cannot prevent all conflict, but when we know where the hungry, the homeless and the sick exist, then we can help. “
Today in Dublin there are 4,312 adults in official homeless emergency accommodation and 31,196 households on the social housing waiting list, according to Focus Ireland. With such high numbers, we need now more than ever more people helping the less fortunate, and I’m glad to be one of those people.
The Soup Run has opened my eyes in more than one aspect, and I’m forever thankful for it. It has showed me that most people on the street have just recently had a bit of hard luck, whether that be a death of a loved one or an unfortunate situation, and that most are really nice people if given a chance. I have been able to witness what a bit of compassion and kindness can do to a person going through a hard time, especially if most of the time the person is kicked to the side and/or degraded.
I have also been able to feel how rewarding it is to put effort and make food for someone else that maybe hasn’t had any food at all for a while, and be able to see how appreciative of it they are. It’s a whole other feeling of contentment when you’re able to put a smile on someone’s face with a simple few words asking about their day. It’s made me realise how a simple action can brighten someone else’s life and how showing a bit of compassion can go a long way.
I’m very grateful to have been given this opportunity, which has changed my mind-set in the best way possible, and I’m looking forward to do it as many times as possible this year. It’s certainly an experience that I’ll carry with me for the rest of my life.
– Nieves Chavez Perez