An Post launch The Shared Network, which will let people donate mobile data to the homeless 8 months ago

An Post launch The Shared Network, which will let people donate mobile data to the homeless

An effort to provide connectivity for Ireland's homeless community.

An Post have launched an initiative across Ireland to help Ireland's homeless community connect with society using free mobile data.

The donations to the network will come from An Post Mobile and its customers. 18,000GB has been donated by An Post Mobile to start the project off, after which the people of Ireland - new customers and existing customers of An Post Mobile - can donate by signing up or topping up their own phones.

The Shared Network will add an extra 1GB to its data for every new customer to An Post Mobile between now and the end of 2020.

"When you're on your own in these places, being able to text your kids is a big thing. I feel I've let the kids down if I can't get in contact with them but some months I just don't have it [data]," says one man who provided testimony on behalf of the programme.

You can watch the launch video for the initiative below.

According to the latest figures released by the Department of Housing, Ireland currently has approximately 10,338 homeless people, and the number of homeless children has increased to 3,848.

The figures published by the Department of Housing do not account for women and children in domestic violence shelters funded by Tulsa, adults and children in hostels not funded by Government departments, rough sleepers and those still living in Direct Provision despite having secured their leave to remain in Ireland.