GiveBack.ie app raises money for homelessness

By Maurice Garvey

A YOUNG entrepreneur from Clondalkin is behind a helpful new App, which supports homelessness via simple everyday transactions.

GiveBack.ie raises money for Inner City Helping Homeless (ICHH), and was developed by Victoria Ryan-Nesbitt (23), from Clondalkin, and James Gallagher from Rathoath, Co Meath.

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Dean Scurry (MC), Shane Burke, Cathal Curry, Victoria Ryan-Nesbitt, James Gallagher, Anthony Flynn (Councillor & ICHH CEO) and Brian McLoughlin (ICHH Public Relations) at the launch

People who sign up for the free App, simply shop at over 1,200 online retailers – including Amazon – and a percentage of their purchase goes towards ICHH.

It doesn’t actually cost the purchaser anything, which is an aspect of the App that appeals to people, according to Victoria.

“A lot of people want to help out, but can’t because they don’t have the time or money. This doesn’t cost customers anything. You shop as normal. The donation depends on the retailer and size of purchase. With Hotel.com it is 10 per cent, but if you are buying a laptop, it would be between one to one-and-a-half per cent.”

She continued: “We approached retailers and some approached us, with corporate social schemes and ethical consumerism a massive topic at the moment.”

The App was officially launched last week in Dogpatch Labs, at GiveBack.ie’s base in the CHQ Building, Custom House Quay.

Among those in attendance to support the launch were Senator Lynn Ruane, actor Emmet Kirwan, and Anthony Flynn, CEO of ICHH.

Numerous people took to social media to acknowledge the benefits of the App to the homelessness crisis, including a tweet by the Rubber Bandits.

Victoria, a Greenpark resident and UCD Actuarial and Financial Studies graduate, was motivated to start the venture, after seeing a former secondary school student on the streets.

“About two years ago, I was walking down Abbey Street, outside Penneys there was a homeless middle-aged woman, wearing a jacket from the school I went to (Coláiste Bride).

“I talked to her, and she was a former student at the school. That was a big factor in starting the App.”

In April, GiveBack.ie was a recipient of €50,000 via the Google.org Impact Challenge, which selects 15 non-profits with innovative ideas for growing economic and social opportunity in Ireland, with funding and Google training.

Victoria and James, who has just finished his own studies at DCU, are now in a position to work full steam ahead on the project.

To sign up visit giveback.ie

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