Director's Report

Our Director, Dr. Dermot Kavanagh, speaks about the challenges we faced in 2018, how we responded and the successes we as a community achieved during the year.

Chair's Report

Eoin MacCuirc, Chair of our voluntary Board of Directors, highlights the important role the wider community in Cork plays in supporting people who are homeless.

Sarah’s* Story

Having overcome a heroin addiction, Sarah found herself homeless when she could not secure affordable rental accommodation. Sarah tells her story of addiction, recovery and homelessness and of the hope and stability that Cork Simon housing is bringing to her life.
*not her real name

Our Impact


people supported across all of our services
We increased our access to housing and as a result 54% more people were housed in 2018 compared to 2017
We increased our emergency accommodation and as a result 23% fewer people slept rough in 2018 compared to 2017


hot meals served at our Soup Run


people used our Day Service


In 2018 we secured access to 24 additional housing units. These came from social rentals, allocations from other approved housing bodies and from our own purchase of five homes.

This expansion of properties enabled 30 people to move to secure and affordable, independent housing in 2018 with support from our Housing Support Team. 50% of those who moved to a home of their own in 2018 came directly from emergency accommodation or rough sleeping.

In 2018, our Housing Support Team supported a total of 126 people to maintain their tenancies or take steps towards securing independent accommodation while a further 68 people received round-the-clock care and support at our High Support Houses.

"I think I can get myself together here. I’m talking more about my addiction; I feel safe here. I’m grabbing this opportunity with two hands and I’m not letting go. It’s absolutely brilliant."

Elizabeth* speaks about the difference that safe and affordable housing is making in her life.

* not her real name

People who moved to secure and affordable independent and supported housing

Emergency Accommodation

Set up in late 2017 with support from Cork City Council as a short-term measure for the winter months, our Nightlight service remained open throughout all of 2018, such was demand.

While very basic (mattresses and sleeping bags on the floor of our Day Centre), the Nightlight offered refuge from the streets to many in 2018. Extra capacity created by the Nightlight also allowed for positive, effective changes at our emergency services:

• The very difficult situation of having to turn people away because the shelter was full fell by 94% from 2017 to 2018.

• The number of people recorded by our Outreach Team as sleeping rough fell by 23% from an average of 19 per night in 2017 to an average of 12 per night in 2018.

• We were able to guarantee many people a shelter bed for as long as needed, offering them a degree of security and stability from which to address their needs.

“I’m starting to get motivated because I have something steady now to work with.”

Tim* describes the difference that having a bed in the Emergency Shelter has made to him

* not his real name

Between the Nightlight and Emergency Shelter, an average of

per night

relied on Cork Simon emergency accommodation in 2018


In 2018 we published our first longitudinal research study.

Last Resort involved in-depth interviews over 18 months with women and men staying at our Emergency Shelter. The results were stark: long-term stays in emergency accommodation add to people’s vulnerabilities in terms of social exclusion, morale and the challenge of finding a home.

Cork Simon played a leading role in the national Simon Week campaign #HomelessnessNotNormal which gathered 13,243 signatures, sending the message to government that homelessness is neither normal nor acceptable.

We visited 70 secondary schools and colleges, supporting


to understand the causes of and be part of the solutions to homelessness.

Addiction Supports

Teams across our community worked collectively to support people to address problem drug and alcohol use in 2018.

• Our Youth Homeless Drug Prevention Programme supported 38 young people at risk of, or engaged in, drug use.

• Our Addiction Treatment and Aftercare Programme supported 40 people to rebuild their lives through treatment or aftercare.

• Our Training and Employment Team devised and delivered 120 hours of Recovery Coaching for service users keen to develop life skills to aid their recovery.

• With support from our Housing Support Team, 10 people successfully moved to independent, secure and affordable housing post treatment.

Activities, Employment & Training

Our Activities Programme and our Employment and Training Programme support and empower people to enhance their skills, confidence and employability, building on the stepping stones that lead people out of homelessness and towards sustained independent living.

293 people took part in 1,497 group and individual activities during 2018.

202 people undertook 475 training and education courses in the 12 months to September 2018.

Volunteers & Donors

We are deeply grateful to the individuals, families, communities, businesses and organisations who supported our work in 2018.

824 part-time volunteers and 38 full-time volunteers from 15 different countries gave generously of their time and skills during 2018.

While 14,446 kind-hearted and committed donors raised 4.5 million euro in support of our work.

Thank you for your support - thank you for believing in people.

Accounts 2018

87c of every €1

is spent on activities and services aimed at ending homelessness