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The Priory, Athy, Family Hub Emergency Accommodation

The Priory, Athy – Family Hub

In July 2016 the Government launched Rebuilding Ireland and published an Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness.  One of the five pillars in the Action Plan is to address homelessness, including providing early solutions to address the numbers of families in emergency accommodation and to deliver inter-agency supports for people who are homeless.


In recent years the instances of homelessness in County Kildare has increased.  It is recognised that homelessness is often the result of a number of inter-related social and economic issues.


In 2016 Kildare County Council acquired the former Dominican Church in Athy, together with associated buildings, including the former priory.  With the aims and objectives of the Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness firmly in mind, Kildare County Council entered into a partnership with Peter McVerry Trust, to develop a family hub in The Priory building, to provide emergency accommodation to families. 


In welcoming the development of the family hub in The Priory, Peter Carey, Chief Executive of Kildare County Council said, “It is great to see this facility being delivered in the county, which is the outcome of a positive approach through partnership with Peter McVerry Trust.  The long-term solution to the current homelessness issue is to increase supply of homes, however, in the interim there is a need for appropriate emergency/transition accommodation, particularly for families.”


Peter McVerry Trust is a charity set up by Fr Peter McVerry to reduce homelessness and the harm caused by drug misuse and social disadvantage.  Since December 2014, Peter McVerry Trust has operated supported temporary accommodation services in County Kildare, on behalf of Kildare County Council. This service, which will now be extended to The Priory, provides high quality accommodation with professional on site supports to adults experiencing homelessness in the county.


Peter McVerry Trust will work with families during their stay in The Priory to assist them in finding longer term accommodation to meet their family’s needs.


Pat Doyle, CEO of Peter McVerry Trust, said, “Peter McVerry Trust is delighted to be playing its part in providing appropriate accommodation for people who are currently experiencing homelessness as part of this new Family Hub in Athy.  This marvellous service will have on site supports, 7 individual family units, 4 kitchens, 3 laundries, a large garden and children’s play area to ensure that the families are fully facilitated whilst in transition to their new homes.  We would like to thank Kildare County Council for their ongoing support in this important partnership.”


Ends                                                                                                              19 April 2017



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