By Ross Carney
The Galway Simon community is marking this year’s International Women’s Day by highlighting that nearly half of homeless adults in the West are women.
The latest figures from the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government show that there are 11,574 homeless adults in Ireland, and in the West 47% are women.
“Homelessness is often associated with men. However, 47% of adults in the West who are homeless are women.”
CEO of Galway Simon Community, Karen Golden, said: “The Housing and Homelessness crisis is impacting a lot of women, and we have seen a 15% increase in the number of female adults in Emergency Accommodation across Galway, Mayo and Roscommon in the last year. Homelessness is often associated with men. However, 47% of adults in the West who are homeless are women.”
Golden also stated that “With some women who we support, the key issue they are facing is the lack of affordable housing. When we can help them to either retain the accommodation they have or find alternative housing and to avoid the trauma of Emergency Accommodation, they have no further need of our Services.”
“For others, there is sadly a strong link between domestic violence or abuse and homelessness among women. We also see that women’s experiences of homelessness are largely influenced by high rates of adverse childhood experiences. Mental and physical health issues can also sometimes be the cause of homelessness. For women with more complex needs, we provide a higher level of support and we are here for as long as we are needed.”
The Galway Simon Community established a Women and Families Service in 2019 to provide specialised support to women and their families affected by homelessness.
Golden stated further that “In 2022 over 400 of the households that Galway Simon Community supported included female adults.”
The Galway Simon Community supported over 800 households including over 220 families with more than 470 children in 2022.
The Galway Simon Community can be found here or contacted at 091 381828.