Women who are homeless in Cork today are particularly vulnerable, the reasons why are wide, varied and complex.
It is easy to understand how lives can become so chaotic, so quickly. Without support, intervention and empowerment, that chaos can become a lifetime pattern through generations.

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Women who have escaped situations of violence, sexual abuse or domestic conflict often find themselves homeless.

When on the streets or in temporary accommodation, they are extremely vulnerable to exploitation and sexual assault.

They find themselves distanced from their usual network with no safeguards to prevent them from spiralling further into chaos. This exploitation and alienation compounds the trauma which led them to homeless services in the first place.

Young women leaving State Care or those released from prison or rehabilitation programmes are at high risk of homelessness.

Released into the community with no support and no idea of how to support themselves or live independently.

Cuts to mental health services mean that many women in need of support find themselves in shelters, or on the streets. Women with addiction issues, whether alcohol, gambling, prescription or illegal drugs find themselves without a stable base where they can concentrate on their recovery.

We have used stock photography for this image

We have used stock photography for this image

For children, the impacts of homelessness can affect their entire future. Growing up with constant chaos and uncertainty, often in extreme poverty, can lead to poor health, low self-esteem, problems in school, alienation, and ultimately, as an adult, high risk of future homelessness.

When women and their children do find housing, they are often unable to cope alone in their new surroundings. A house does not simply replace the supporting relationships they have lost and building a new life and gaining new friends can be extremely hard work. Women in this situation can easily sink into depression, repeat old patterns, become isolated in the community and eventually spiral back into homelessness.