More than 3,500 people supported by homeless charity
Homeless charity DePaul Ireland said it assisted more than 3,500 people last year across the island of Ireland.
A total of 3,542 men, women and children, including 410 families, came through the organisation's services of homeless prevention, high support accommodation, health and rehabilitation, and housing.
In its annual report for 2020, the charity said it helped 772 children facing homelessness.
DePaul also reported a large increase in the numbers in the number of people successfully moved into permanent accommodation.
A total of 554 people were moved into suitable housing during 2020, which is up 40% on the previous year.
The charity said it added five additional services and provided 240 extra beds in its shielding units for the most medically at-risk within the homeless population during a reorganisation of services when the Covid-19 pandemic hit.
As a result, the charity said it "successfully managed and supported 67.6% of shielding bed capacity in Dublin during the pandemic".
CEO of DePaul, David Carroll said: "As a society, we were all faced with the exceptional challenges brought on by Covid-19 but, despite this, Depaul's quick response to the crisis enabled us to protect our service users who were most vulnerable to exposure to the virus."
It also set up an Approved Housing Body - DePaul Housing - with partners Tuath Housing and had secured 11 properties, housed five service users in new long-term accommodation and began development on a further 20 units.
The charity also worked with those in Direct Provision through a service called Cosán Nua and supported 246 adults and 196 to move into communities in different parts of the country.