Charity Partnership Launch for Journey Home Fund

Photo by Murt Fahy L-R: At the launch of the Charity Partnership was Amanda Cusack (DXC), David Collins (Micro Focus), Mark Gantly (HPE), Deirdre Treacy (Galway Simon), Louise Gallagher (HPE), Nora Colombani (ISS), Paddy Medley (HPE), Teresa Kelly (HPE) and absent from photo Paul Brennan (HPE).

2019 sees tech giants Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), DXC & Micro Focus, along with facilities partner ISS, come together in force to support those facing homelessness in their local community by selecting Galway Simon Community as their Charity Partner of the Year. One of the key, practical goals of the partnership is to raise €60,000. Among other projects, they will be supporting Galway Simon’s ‘Journey Home Fund’ to fit out 12 houses and apartments in 2020 to create new homes for approximately 30 individuals and children in Galway who would otherwise be facing homelessness.

In addition to raising funds, the tech giants have launched a programme of volunteering with Galway Simon that leverages their technical expertise through skills-share projects, which will see over 60 employees involved.

The ‘Journey Home’ fund will allow Galway Simon Community to rebuild the lives of individuals and families who have experienced homelessness. The partnership will help the charity to undertake a fit out of 12 of the 25 properties they plan to purchase over the next two years. As an Approved Housing Body, the charity can access funding to purchase these new homes. However, they need urgent support for the fit out costs to enable them to turn these 12 houses into homes and help an estimated 30 individuals and children in Galway City and County who would otherwise be facing homelessness.

Louise Gallagher of HPE, Chairperson of the Charity Partnership Committee explained the decision behind choosing Galway Simon Community as their partner. “This year, all of the companies’ onsite have come together as a community to make an impact locally. Homelessness is such a huge issue nationwide and people who never thought they could be affected are being faced with either the possibility or reality of homelessness. We wanted to do something to really try and prevent this from happening to people here in Galway, and for this reason we have partnered with Galway Simon Community whose key focus area is prevention”  Louise said.

For 40 years, Galway Simon Community has been preventing homelessness, restoring dignity and rebuilding lives. They have helped thousands of families and individuals, within our local community and beyond, to overcome homelessness and to leave it behind them for good. For others, they have been a pillar of ongoing support to ensure that they do not fall into the cycle of homelessness again.

Speaking about the partnership, Karen Golden, CEO of Galway Simon Community said urgent action is needed to ensure people have places to call home and that the partnership will help the charity to do this.

“We are delighted to partner with HPE, DXC, Micro Focus and ISS who will be supporting us to make a big impact in the local community by helping us to ensure that people can find their journey to a new home. Two years ago Galway Simon Community had our most challenging year with a 70% increase in the demand for our services, and this level of demand has been sustained since. The lack of affordable housing available in Galway has resulted in us having to take urgent action to ensure that we can provide sustainable solutions to those faced with homelessness,” Karen said.

“We are now extending our community housing programme, which currently supports 52 people in Galway City and County, by acquiring 25 additional properties over 2019 and 2020 to provide homes for individuals and families facing homelessness in our local community. In support of this ambitious plan, we need urgent help to fit out these homes to ensure that they can provide the best possible start for those they are supporting, and help them leave homelessness behind for good,” she explained.

“Through the fundraising efforts of this charity partnership, the companies will support Galway Simon Community to turn these houses into homes for those who would otherwise be faced with homelessness,” Karen added.