Irish Defence Forces Veterans Charity takes Sleeping Flags campaign nationwide – The annual campaign will see ONE members on the streets today 21st May with symbolic tricolour sleeping bags to raise money and awareness for Ireland’s forgotten veterans.
Originally held in Dublin, the campaign will extend to Athlone, Galway, Cork and Limerick this year. The event will see veterans and ONE members out on the street with symbolic and specially-created, tricolour sleeping bags to highlight the fate of many of Ireland’s ex-servicemen and women, who find themselves homeless.
ONE offers housing and support to homeless veterans across the country, with the ultimate goal of helping the ex-personnel access permanent accommodation, improve their mental health and prevent future homelessness.
Each of today’s locations was specifically chosen based on the demand for crucial ONE services in the area, with the campaign focused around the Civic Centre in Athlone Town, Patrick Street in Cork City, Shop Street in Galway City, O’Connell Street in Limerick, and the GPO, Heuston Station, and the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.
All funds raised throughout the day will go directly towards improving support centres, funding the vital veteran homes, increasing mental health outreach and supporting the people at the heart of the charity.
Dubbed ‘Sleeping Flags’, the symbolic act challenges protocols around the treatment and image of the Irish flag. Many of the veterans who use ONE’s services, sacrificed their physical and mental well-being, serving both at home and abroad, in UN peacekeeping missions as far away as the Congo and the Middle East to maintain stability yet found little support at home when they left active duty. Many suffered PTSD, disability, addiction issues, familial breakdowns and eventual homelessness.
To date, ONE has helped over 1,000 veterans get back on their feet. The charity provides accommodation and meals for 54 veterans, who would otherwise be homeless, in its four residential homes and is currently developing a further home in Cork to bring its homeless accommodation to 60 bedrooms. ONE also has a network of 15 Veteran Support Centres and 37 Branches, but the cost of running these facilities is increasing all the time. The charity has an annual operating budget of approximately €1.1 million for current services in 2022, excluding capital spending associated with the new home in Cork. While the organisation is grateful for the state funding it receives, there is a significant deficit that must be raised by the charity to support its vital services.
To donate text ‘FLAG’ To 50300, or visit www.ONE-Veterans.org
Texts cost €4 – ONE will receive a minimum of €3.60
Service Provider: LIKECHARITY – Helpline: 01 481 9311
Full press release here:
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