A young Laois man who has managed to turn his life around from being homeless on the streets, has thanked the local charity who supported him at his lowest ebb.
Christy from Portarlington also had happy news to announce, and made a donation to mark the occasion.
He wrote his message to Portlaoise Action to Homelessness (PATH) who drive up to Dublin twice weekly to meet homeless people and give them hot food and drinks and a listening ear.
"Hi folks, ye may not remember me but I was that young guy from Portarlington that was homeless in Dublin for a few years. I use to meet with your crew on a Saturday evening and they would look after me with food, clothing etc. Whatever I needed and I appreciate everything ye have done for me.
"Last February 2020 I moved over to England. I got a job now, a house, a girlfriend and believe it or not we just had a baby Thursday. Anyways I would like to make a little donation to help out as when I needed help the likes of your organisation really helped me and I would like to help a little," Christy wrote.
With his permission, PATH shared his lovely message, and many more message returned congratulating and thanking Christy.
Irene McRedmond is chairperson of PATH, who also now deliver food parcels to people in need all over Laois.
"We are absolutely delighted to hear he is doing so well. Our volunteer Gina remembers him. He is young, only in his late 20s now. We don't know why he was homeless but we know from being in Dublin that homeless people do feel very alienated and anyone who knows Portlaoise and sees us, it's nearly like a piece of home.
"It really was lovely. It lifts us a bit, to know we are making a difference. Listening and talking to our clients, giving them that respect, it is more important than the food we give out. We are so delighted Christy has been able to have a fresh start, it was so lovely to hear back from him," Irene told the Leinster Express.
PATH is currently welcoming donations of Easter eggs, and new men and women's underwear.
They also provide food support to Laois families, through referrals from Laois County Council, MABS and Laois Domestic Abuse among others. Donations can be made at Portlaoise Parish Centre, email email@example.com for details, or see their Facebook page here.