Wednesday 12 December 2018

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Glanmire man pens song for homeless

Wednesday, 5th December, 2018 4:57pm

A songwriter will perform a song he wrote in aid of homelessness at a charity gig this weekend.

Ronan O’Brien, a songwriter and producer from Glanmire, has penned the tune inspired by his own experiences helping with Cork homeless services.

“I was introduced two years ago to the homeless situation, when my brother and I first volunteered with Helping Cork’s Homeless,” he said of the song, written with friend Stephen McMahon as part of the pair’s Pave Your Way Productions.

“That planted the seed really. Before, I’d only ever seen the crisis from outside. I’d been ignorant to its real effects, thinking those people in the street were just looking for money. But seeing and hearing stories about why real people had become homeless allowed me to understand that these people in the street weren’t just trying to get money off me – they just want to be acknowledged, looked at, seen as people.”

The video for ‘My Home’ features Bernard O’Hehir, a former homeless man who is now a hard-working volunteer with Cork’s homelessness charities. Shot around Cork city centre by Aaron Wiley, it was the brainchild of O’Brien’s friend Mark Kiely, whose idea for a short film on homelessness led him to become the main actor in the production.

“Anyone can be homeless, you don’t know who’s suffering around you,” O’Brien said. “The song is closely inspired by mental health as well, as I’ve lost a lot of friends over mental health illnesses. It’s not going to change the world, it’s just about creating awareness. It’s a song that can be applied to anyone, in any situation.”

As part of his efforts to help Cork’s less fortunate, O’Brien will be playing a free gig at The Kino this Sunday 9 December at 7pm.

“Some of Cork’s homeless charities will be there, and we’ll be doing a collection on the night which will go either directly to the charities or used to buy supplies for those groups, as the Christmas period is always particularly tough on services,” he said.

To check out My Home, go to the Pave Your Way Productions Facebook page, or to make a donation go to Helping the Homeless page on gofundme.com.

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