‘Sam’, aged five, eating as he knelt on a piece of cardboard on Grafton Street last night

The Homeless Street Café is a group of volunteers who offer food, toiletries, clothes and friendship to people who are homeless every Tuesday night on Grafton Street in Dublin.

Last night.

One of the group’s members posted the above picture on the group’s Facebook page with the message:

“There is an image burnt in all the teams’ minds tonight. It’s wrong and it’s distressing but this IS happening and it’s only getting worse each week.

‘Sam’ is 5 and this was him eating a dinner of carbonara tonight on a sheet of cardboard. Can we really accept this?”

Homeless Street Cafe (Facebook)

We have no way of completely verifying the accuracy of the above image but we are taking the homeless café at their word unless we hear otherwise and no ‘clickbait’ motives were behind this post and sorry for upset caused.

H/T: Mick Caul


This afternoon.

The Homeless Street Café has written the following update on their Facebook page:

“Thank you so much everyone for your overwhelming response and for not just accepting that this is ok.

This post has reached over a quarter of a million people which is amazing and we have over a thousand comments and messages to go through.

We are small volunteer group and all our team are back in their day jobs today so please bare with us as we navigate through our next steps.

Our priority as always is continuing to support the homeless who come to us each week and the children among them that “Sam” represents.

**To confirm “Sam” is in emergency accommodation and attends school. His mother is simply trying to access nutritious home cooked meals for him.

Most emergency accommodations strictly forbid cooking or food preparation.”

The Homeless Street Café (Facebook)

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54 thoughts on “‘Sam’

  1. Rob Gale

    what was varadkars approval rating up to again? 50%? will it go down after this? then back up next week when all the dopes have forgotten about it? .. things have to change. they simply have to. and FG are absolutely not the ones to do it.

  2. Eoineyo

    We await the usual official response, his family were offered somewhere but there were “issues” or “difficulties” but they can say what they were because they can’t talk about individual cases, it will be just enough for the usual government apologists or poor haters to justify this poor lads situation.
    In case there is any doubt about what I am saying, this is totally the responsibility of our government and their actions no matter what justification they try to pass on to this child and his parents.
    The agenda for the next election needs to be how government has failed in it’s management of our country and not the one that they are push on of climate change.

      1. Eoineyo

        That didn’t take long, the facts are there are well over 10,000 people that meet the government’s criteria (remember the government changed the criteria to lower the number) of what makes a person homeless. That are enough facts that anyone should know, but we are now accustomed to these shameful figures it has been made normal, just as the waiting lists for the health services.
        While the climate is a major issue but we are now being lead away from the major and shameful crisis that this government has not just created but has actively encouraged.

          1. Mick

            It doesn’t matter about the facts of his background, he’s fupping homeless, and eating his dinner while sitting on a piece of cardboard on the street.

          2. Eoineyo

            This kid’s family background is absolutely none of mine, yours and anyone else’s business, we are not entitled to know anything about it. You are not entitled to look through this child’s background you do not need to find if he or his family meets with your criteria for sympathy or humanity. You might think because you watch the Kardashians that there is a right to know everything because someone who is actively trying to help posts a heartbreaking photo of modern day Ireland, the fact there is a child eating their dinner on a piece of cardboard should be enough.
            It is probably not your fault that you are trying to dehumanise because let’s face it that’s how you are being conditioned to think, you just have to look at the hate campaign that Leo ran to get into power, no one objected even when the facts came out and dispelled the myths. It is a tactic that is repeated the world over.
            If you don’t get annoyed at our government when you see a picture like or when you hear about all the other multiple failings of government there is either something wrong with you or you are just easily lead.

          3. scundered

            And this discussion has led to believe I watch the Kardashians? Okaaayyy

            So you don’t know the facts therefore cannot judge this case, thank you.

          4. Eoineyo

            Lol what do you need a sworn testimony?
            The fact that Kardashian bit is only piece that actually sunk in says it all really. You keep your head well buried in the sand, an ignorant life is probably a happy one lol.

          5. scundered

            You just admitted to being ignorant to half of the facts in this case, yet still went ahead with your lazy verdict, then came up with a few even more ignorant conclusions about a complete stranger on the internet… and now want to tar others as ignorant.

          6. Ghost of Yep

            Scundered, do you think there is a housing crisis? That families are struggling to the point that some are legitimately in this position?

            Whether you believe this case or not is somewhat irrelevant. The idea that you need some sort of proof for this case in particular is bizarre. Do you need first hand accounts to feel empathy for everything in the world?

            If you want FACTS the stats are there. Even better, visit a shelter, a designated hotel or walk the streets of Dublin. Such an odd thing to question.

          7. Eoineyo

            Ok, it is clear you are picking what you want to read from my comments and replies. If I were to apply your logic- so you don’t deny you watch the Kardashians and you don’t deny you are entitled lol.
            When you looked for facts you were given them (10000 plus homeless etc) but you choose to ignore them, obviously facts don’t suit your argument or prejudice, instead you went looking for proof of virtue, where you were correctly told the child’s personal life is none of your business and you are not entitled seek justification of your prejudice, you also ignored this.
            From your comments it is clear you refuse to allow your opinions to be disputed regardless of fact and your sense entitlement to the lives of other people you believe to be below you just demonstrates a very sad section of our society that have too much influence in today’s the political landscape.

          8. scundered

            Yet again I have to spell it out to you, you only have one side of the story… am glad you are not a judge if you really are that lazy in coming to conclusions.

          9. Eoineyo

            What the hell are you on about? What other side of the story are you looking for, the cardboard or the meal?
            It is clear you are not looking for another side of a story you are just looking for a way to justify your prejudice.
            But now that you have outed yourself there is no point in giving any more of my time to you, from your replies it is clear you are just ignorant and no amount of reasoning is going to change that, I genuinely feel sorry for you and I do hope for your future you wake up to your anger at those less privileged than you.
            Look after yourself.

        1. Scundered

          I would suggest you put a bit more thought into how to read situations, fact finding, personal responsibility, before casting wild aspersions, and falling into the laziest antiestablishment position of blaming your woes on the government at the earliest convenience.

          1. Eoineyo

            Are you an American? You sound like an American you are either that or a child still living at home with no experience of the real world. As far as I am concerned and looking at the other replies to you it is obvious you are the only one too lazy to accept the truth of the matter and instead are looking to insert a narrative that suits your opinion. If you want to debate that is fine, but in order to do so you need to accept the facts that we know to be facts otherwise you are just talking nonsense which just makes you look like an idiot and social media noise maker.

          2. Eoineyo

            Well that’s a cop out. It’s just experience and it looks like I hit the nail on the head lol.

          3. Scundered

            All you’ve done so far is accuse me of all the things you’re guilty of and then rounded it off with some xenophobia, hardly your greatest moment.

          4. Scundered

            Is that the peak of your intellectual contribution to the debate or have you the capacity for anything else that will even remotely stir your grey matter?

          5. Eoineyo

            Sorry kiddo, part of being an adult is knowing when to quit, please save whatever dignity you might have left and just put it down to experience, the longer you go the worse it looks.
            You were doing ok, but you were too repetitive plus you were trying add a narrative or a story line that was never mentioned or existed this made you look bad.
            Better luck next time.

    1. Rob_G

      “In case there is any doubt about what I am saying, this is totally the responsibility of our government…”

      I would have thought that feeding their child was the responsibility of the parents, rather than the government’s. If you have kids and can’t afford to house and feed them, the state will give the parents money to provide for these needs. Short of sending some civil servant around to feed each kid themselves, I’m not sure how much more the state can do to ensure that children aren’t eating meals off a piece of cardboard on the ground.

      1. dav

        they could bail out the banks in the space of an evening, and you aren’t sure how much more they can do to help solve the above issue??

        1. Rob_G

          There is lots that the state can do to solve the homeless issue generally; to ensure that this child is fed each night, there is no way the state can guarantee it, short of taking the child from its parents (which, I’m sure you will agree, should not be done lightly).

          1. Donal

            This child is fed every night, by a soup kitchen off grafton st.
            The state is doing little to nothing to fund the building of large numbers of houses.apartments on land that the state owns, until they do this they are doing as good as nothing to solve the homelessness issue

      2. Eoineyo

        Our government has created and adds to the situation, they spin and tell lies to try deny their responsibilities to all their citizens, they spend millions of tax payers money to attempt to justify their lack of action by make their victims “less than” or that they somehow deserve their punishment. Unfortunately people like yourself Rob lap it up and repeat it. They wouldn’t do it unless it worked.

  3. GiggidyGoo

    Does Varadkar, Zappone, Doherty, Harris, Murphy give a damn? No, no no and no.
    They are a disgusting bunch of wasters. Young hungry child eating on a pavement. That is the measure they use for success.
    There are words I’d like to use here but I’d be banned.

  4. Brughahaha

    Disgusting and Wrong
    And its happening because , lets be honest , middle Ireland will ooh and ahhhh but doesn’t actually give a toss as long as nothing troubles their glib smug little world

    1. millie vanilly strikes again

      They do. Homeless people also happen to have it bad too.

      It’s not a competition, and homelessness and the refugee situation in this country are not one and the same thing. They are separate issues.

    2. Janet, I ate my avatar

      one has nothing to do with the other except the same inept government and contempt they face

    1. Donal

      Your offer is generous and kind and I applaud you for it

      But it is not an answer. Staying in a spare room in your house for a period of time is as unsatisfactory an answer as housing families in B&Bs and hotels for months and years on end.
      Until the government start building social housing they are clearly stating that they do not care about the levels of homelessness. No other effort will work. The private sector will never solve this issue, the state has to provide.
      Shame on this government, shame shame shame

    2. Spaghetti Hoop

      Nice one Claire. I don’t have the space, yet really want to help – but cynically suspicious of Irish charities and Irish church missions.

  5. ciaran

    116 million spent on homelessness last year, where is the extra money going to come from to build these houses by the government and every homeless persons circumstances are differant. it’s not just as simple as building houses and problem solved there are mental health issues, drug abuse, alcohol and various health issues and bad luck that lead to these situations. what’s the long term solution?? the countries budget is stretched as it is. where is the funding going to come from every year for ever for this.

    1. Donal

      99% of homelessness in this country at the moment has nothing to do with mental health and/or substance abuse issues, it is simply that people who were renting accommodation had to move out and could not find alternative accommodation.
      The causes of having to move out are varied.
      Some were in a family home with parents etc and for various reasons (overcrowding, family strife etc) felt they could no longer stay in the house.
      Some were renting in the private sector and no amount of state support was able to keep paying the rent that they were being asked to as rents increased. With a huge shortage of residences available in general (social housing or private housing) these people were simply left with nowhere to go.

      The solution is to borrow money (it has never been cheaper), hand it to councils and allow them to direct hire building firms to construct shedloads of apartments and houses on land that the councils already own. (actual process obviously includes more steps than this but basics are identical).

      The governments have chosen instead to hope that the private sector will build loads and loads of houses, and that people will purchase these. Some will be lived in by owner occupiers, some will be rented by people who can afford to pay a market rent, some will be rented by the state under various guises/schemes and the residents will pay a reduced rent to the state. It is a travesty that this government are willing to use the likes of HAP as a long term solution to the housing crisis in lieu of building houses/apartments that they will own

    2. RuilleBuille

      There are SEVEN homeless housing charities operating in Dublin largely funded by taxpayers. That means seven CEOs salaries, seven Head Offices, etcetera.

      Give that monet to the Dublin Council to build housing.

      1. Rob_G

        There are a lot more than 7; there were 23 in 2014. I imagine at least half of them are in receipt of funding from the government.

        1. Ghost of Yep

          Which proves both the inefficiency of the charity sector AND the unwillingness of those with the power to make a real difference to do so.

        2. Steph Pinker

          Considering you’re a FG lackey living in Brussels at Irish taxpayers’ expense, Rob-G, I’m surprised you have [a claim to] an imagination.

      2. Eoineyo

        It would be great if there was no need for so many charities, they have become the outsourcing of the governments responsibilities, unfortunately.

    3. ReproBertie

      The state was able to find €84 million in the budget so that people can race dogs and horses. There is no political will to resolve the homeless crisis and there will be no political will until they get beaten over the head with it on the doorsteps. This government are just cruising along doing nothing because they know as long as Sasamach is unresolved FF are happy to cruise along with them. We can only hope that the Brits actually get out on October 31st so that we can get on with having a long overdue election and kick FG to the kerb.

      We won’t of course. It’ll be musical chairs with FF and FG for the most part because they promise to be good this time and it’ll never happen again.

      1. Steph Pinker

        ReproBertie: I will never vote FFG/Lab/SF, also, there are no independent/ Green Party candidates in my constituency; can you suggest as to how one [such as I] can use my democratic vote in the next GE without viable alternatives?

        I’d rather not use my vote, than abuse my vote just for the sake of voting.

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