Monday 26 August 2019

WATCH: An Post launches 'empowering' postal service for homeless people

Debbie Byrne, Managing Directior of An Post Retail with Tara Mc Neill, mother , grandmother, Ireland footballer and former services user who helped launch new Address Point Service at the GPO in Dublin. Photo: Maxwell Photography
Debbie Byrne, Managing Directior of An Post Retail with Tara Mc Neill, mother , grandmother, Ireland footballer and former services user who helped launch new Address Point Service at the GPO in Dublin. Photo: Maxwell Photography
Rachel Farrell

Rachel Farrell

AN POST have teamed up with a number of Irish charities to launch a free postal service for homeless people.

The national postal company launched 'Address Point' today, which will provide a free personal postal address and letter collection service for people who are homeless or living in temporary accommodation.

The service will give those who are homeless the opportunity to arrange medical appointments, apply for jobs and keep in touch with family and friends.

Homelessness charities will help users to register, and will give them a personal address based on the person’s choice of local post office, which will be their mail collection point. 

Customers can then collect their letters on production of photo ID at the post office of their choice.

Speaking at the launch today, Debbie Byrne, Managing Director of An Post Retail explained that An Post set out to find a solution that respected people’s privacy, and helped to make their lives a little easier.

Derek McGuire, former homeless service user who helped launch new Address Point Service at the GPO in Dublin. Photo: Maxwell Photography
Derek McGuire, former homeless service user who helped launch new Address Point Service at the GPO in Dublin. Photo: Maxwell Photography

"We are keenly aware of the difficulties which can result from people not having a reliable, secure mailing address or letter collection point to access vital services we all take for granted and in looking for a job," Ms Byrne said.

"The input and support of both service users, service providers, An Post staff and postmasters was invaluable in bringing Address Point from a good idea to an easily accessible service based around a choice of almost 200 local post offices country-wide."

The initiative is in conjunction with a number of groups and charities, including Dublin Simon, Focus Ireland, Peter McVerry Trust, Merchant’s Quay Ireland, St. Vincent de Paul, Capuchin Day Centre, Threshold, Inner City Helping Homeless, Crosscare, the Dublin City Council Homeless Executive and all local authorities.

Francis Doherty, Head of Communications at Peter McVerry Trust welcomed the new Address Point service.

"This is a personal and practical service that will make a real difference to people’s lives," Mr Doherty said.

"From medical appointments to service applications or keeping in touch with family, having a secure address may seem like a small thing, but it brings huge benefits to people who are homeless and to others living in temporary accommodation."

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