MGA Uplifting the Mercy World’s Efforts to Tackle Homelessness
Siobhán Golden, MGA intern, has undertaken a series of videos interviewing Mercy Sisters and colleagues around the issue of homelessness.
On 11 March, Siobhán met with Carol Vale, Head of Strategic Planning at McAuley Community Services for Women in Melbourne, Australia, via Zoom, to raise awareness on issues of homelessness and to spotlight the various ways in which her ministry is responding to the families, women and children who find themselves in situations of homelessness and family violence. Carol has worked in the homeless sector for over 25 years and has vast experience in project management, direct service delivery, networking and advocacy. In the interview, she highlighted many of the wrap around services and supports that McAuley Community Services for Women provide. These supports largely focus on building back women's confidence, managing psychological stress, and overcoming vulnerabilities, so that women can successfully reintegrate into communities and support themselves. Carol affirms that with the right legislation, goodwill and compassion, the issue of "homelessness can be eradicated".
On 13 April, Siobhán was joined by Sr Libby Fernandez, Founder and Executive Director of Mercy Pedalers in Sacramento, California, to discuss the work her ministry carries out to support those living on the streets. The Mercy Pedalers are a ministry of cyclers who reach out to people experiencing homelessness on the streets, emphasising the importance of ‘welcoming the stranger’. Sr Libby speaks of the situation of homelessness in California and of the many challenges that the COVID-19 pandemic has posed on those living on the streets and on her service delivery. She calls on all of us to reach out and support those experiencing homelessness, stating, “each individual person has the ability to bring mercy to the streets!".
Messages to: Siobhán Golden - MGA Intern