'I'd have to go to a café to study for the Leaving Cert' - teen tells of year living in hotel as family get new home
A mum-of-two has told of her delight with her new home after a year of living in a hotel with her two daughters, one aged seven and the other a 17-year-old studying for her Leaving Cert.
The family will live in a new co-operative housing development which was launched on Richmond Road in Drumcondra today.
It will provide homes to 39 other families who officially moved in this afternoon.
Residents had been on Dublin City Council waiting lists, some were homeless or living in emergency accommodation while others were in overcrowded housing .
Egle Riaukieue (38) had been living in a hotel for the last year, while her 17-year-old daughter was studying for the Leaving Cert.
Gabi (17) said she was forced to study in local cafés to find somewhere quiet to hit the books.
“Since I was doing the Leaving Cert it was hard to find a place to study. I’d go to a restaurant, café, McDonalds to get food, it was hard to eat and find somewhere to study,” she explained.
“There was always noise and all the rooms were right beside each other. One room with three people was a bit much.”
She said is “over the moon” now she can finally bring her friends over.
She is hoping to study a Business course in September.
Her mum said they had been renting a place for four years before they were moved on. This had happened multiple times in the 15 years they were in Ireland.
“The last place was sold,” she said.
“We are happy now. We’ve been here a month and I feel totally different, it feels like a home, and it feels secure.”
The development includes a mix of one, two, three-bedroom A-rated apartments with gardens.
There are a number of schools in the locality, including Drumcondra National School, St Patrick’s National School, Corpus Christi NS as well as secondary and third level colleges.
Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy was on hand to launch the development from Co-operative Housing Ireland.
Mr Murphy said that while progress was being made on the housing crisis, the government was just “half way there”.
“We have got to build at least 20,000 new homes this year, increase that next year and the year after that so we can have sustainable output of somewhere between 25 –35,000 homes per year,” he said.
“To make sure we have houses for people who are on housing lists or people who are coming to work here or people who are returning who had to leave because of the crash.”
“We are doing a number of different things to get houses back into use as quick as possible. We have bought 7,000 houses back into use in the last two years and we can do more on vacancy and we will.
“For the 40 families moving in this is a very special day, these are fantastic homes, first class homes. They are going to be happy here, and live their lives and raise their families here - but we have to keep our focus on people don’t yet have a home.”