Prison inmates make a difference at Christmas

Prison inmates make a difference at Christmas

By Mary Dennehy

THE inmates of Cloverhill Prison have supported the creation of 150 Christmas food hampers, which are being delivered to needy families in Tallaght.

Now an annual tradition, the inmates at the Clondalkin-based remand prison have for the past six years held a Christmas food drive in aid of the Jobstown Crosscare team.

Crosscare and Cloverhill

Volunteers from Crosscare with the hampers created by inmates at Cloverhill Prison

The collection aims to help tackle food poverty, with inmates buying items such as biscuits, tinned goods, teabags, pasta, crisps and sugar from the prison’s tuck shop in the run-up to Christmas.

Speaking with The Echo, Liam Byrne of Crosscare in Jobstown highlighted the “difference” the donated food items will make to families struggling this Christmas.

“We’re coming up to Christmas, which is a really busy time,” Liam said.

“The items we collected from Cloverhill on Tuesday will help to make Christmas hampers for more than 150 families this week alone.

“We generally cater for around 40 to 50 families each week, but as we approach Christmas, people are looking for extra help.

“The items from Cloverhill will be going into these extra hampers, and will make a difference to a number of families who are in a bad way.

“There’ll be some kid out there waking up [at Christmas] with a happier heart because of their donation.

“The inmates have made a difference, and it’s good for them to know this and to know that they have given something back.”

The collection is organised by the Red Cross special status volunteers in Cloverhill Prison, who are currently training to become volunteers.

The training involves a number of modules, with the main focus on improving the community – in particular the health of the community.

Liam also wished to thank the people of Tallaght who showed great generosity during the charity’s recent church collections.

The Crosscare foodbank in Jobstown, which works with St Vincent De Paul, caters for the Tallaght area – anybody in need can call Crosscare on 8360011 or SVP on 8550022.

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