A Facebook photo of a five-year-old homeless Irish boy eating his dinner from a piece of cardboard has sparked outrage and concern.
The picture of the boy, called "Sam," was shared by a volunteer group called The Homeless Street Cafe on Tuesday evening.
The group offers food, toiletries, and clothes to the homeless on Dublin’s Grafton Street every Tuesday night, BreakingNews.ie reports.
The caption of the Facebook post read:
"We are home after another incredibly busy night.
"I’m exhausted, weary and emotional and should (guiltily) go to bed BUT there is an image burnt in all the teams minds tonight.
"It’s wrong and it’s distressing but this IS happening and it’s only getting worse each week.
"'Sam' is 5 and this was him eating a dinner of carbonara tonight on a sheet of cardboard.
"Can we really accept this?"
We are home after another incredibly busy night. I’m exhausted, weary and emotional and should (guiltily) go to bed BUT...Publiée par The Homeless Street Cafe sur Mardi 15 octobre 2019
Since it was posted, the heartbreaking photo has been shared and reacted to over 10,000 times, reports The Irish Post.
Said one comment: “My god this is just devastating and so hard to see as a mother of 2 little boys. My heart is broke looking at this picture we need to take a stand as a country, things need to change.”
Another said: “I never imagined seeing an image such as this in Dublin. I won’t forget it.”
One user commented: “This literally broke my heart in two I'm absolutely shocked to the core. How can this be happening and more importantly how are we accepting it?”
An article in the Irish Mirror last month revealed that one in three of all Ireland’s homeless are children.
After the "overwhelming response" the post received, the volunteer group confirmed that the boy is in emergency accommodation and is able to attend school.