Every Friday night, the Muslim Sisters of Éire, a volunteer-based organization, distribute hundreds of hot meals to Dubliners living in destitution.
Running their soup kitchen outside Dublin’s GPO on O’Connell Street, the Muslim organization say they have been inundated with requests for sleeping bags, warning that homeless people would rather sleep out in the cold than go to a hostel.
“When our volunteers arrived this evening to set up, it was quite calm but soon they were inundated with requests for sleeping bags and tents,” the group posted on Friday, Sunday World reported.
“We brought 25 sleeping bags and all were gone.
“People prefer to sleep on the streets as hostels are not safe. There were families looking for lunches and basic shop because a lot of people have lost jobs.
“We had nearly 300 meals and within 45 minutes, everything was gone. This is in spite of restricting one meal per person as we knew we were low on hot food this week.”
They added: “We have ordered 100 sleeping bags this week and hoping to get more next week. Unfortunately, some of our volunteers are isolating due to COVID and contact tracing so we weren’t able to do a live feed again this week.”
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The Muslim Sisters of Eire (MSOE) is an independent organization of Muslim women living in Ireland.
Over the past five years, MSOE has been running weekly soup kitchens to help the homeless in Dublin, Ireland.
After the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the group has noticed a significant increase in the number of people experiencing food poverty.
This is not the first time for the group to warn about increasing poverty and the issue of the suitability of hostels.
“A very busy and exhausting Friday evening,” they posted about the situation earlier this month.
“…Unfortunately, hostels are not a safe place for people to be in and people prefer to sleep in the streets rather than go into a hostel.”
According to the 2016 Pew Research Centre report, Ireland’s Muslim population stands at approximately 70,000.
Islam lays a great emphasis on the virtue of neighborliness, stressing on Muslims’ individual duty to be good to their neighbors.