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Saturday 18 November 2017

Star-studded line-up for Rock Against Homelessness event

Ham Sandwich's Niamh Farrell
Ham Sandwich's Niamh Farrell

Some of Ireland's top musicians will play a charity event in response to the homeless crisis.

Organised by Independent News & Media, publisher of the Herald, Rock Against Homelessness will be held at the Olympia Theatre on Friday, April 7.

Ham Sandwich, The Blizzards, Delorentos, Finbar Furey, Paul Cleary of the Blades, August Wells and Ivy Nation will be among the line-up.

Special

Homeless musician Danny Bracken, accompanied by Paul Brady and Dave Fleming, will also perform, along with a very special band who will play a set.

Comedian and Dancing With The Stars contestant Katherine Lynch will MC the event, which is in aid of Focus Ireland, a charity that works with people who are homeless or are at risk of losing their home.

Ham Sandwich singer Niamh Farrell stressed the importance of addressing the homeless crisis.

"Homelessness is at a crisis point. We all need to stand up and shout as loud as we can that we won't stand for it," she said.

"Everyone deserves a safe, warm space to go to when the day is over. So many people don't have this. It's wonderful to be able to take part in the Rock Against Homelessness gig and raise much-needed funds for Focus Ireland.

"No one should be left out in the cold. We need to reach out and help each other as much as we can."

Mr Cleary said a Government initiative to build more social housing is needed if the crisis is to be abated. "I look forward to a day when there'll be no need for charities such as Focus," he said.

"In a country as rich as ours, a permanent and safe home should be seen as a basic human right and ought to be provided as a matter of course to those in need.

"A massive Government building programme is required immediately."

Families

There are now 2,407 children in Ireland who are homeless. In Dublin alone, one child became homeless every five hours last month.

Focus Ireland enabled more than 300 families to find a home last year.

More than 1,200 people filled the Olympia Theatre for last year's event, which featured performances from Mundy, Roisin O and Heathers.

Tickets are available from Ticketmaster outlets nationwide and cost €30

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