A heart-rending video in which a sobbing four-year-old girl is told she must spend her third Christmas homeless has gone viral.
Mum Leanne Dunleavy, took the video of daughter Poppy to highlight the devastating effects of homelessness on both children and adults.
The video was posted on Facebook where it has racked up more than 167,000 views with many people blaming the Government for Leanne’s situation.
Leanne says she has been in and out of homeless shelters for the last two years due to unforeseen circumstances, and that she doesn’t expect her situation to change soon.
She said the video "has broken many hearts across the world, not just Ireland".
The short clip shows young Poppy sitting on a bed in a hotel room in Dublin, clearly distraught with red puffy cheeks and tears streaming down her face.
Hair stylist, Leanne then says to her: “Poppy why did you tell your mind out there?”
A crying Poppy replies: “Because I have nowhere to stay, because we have nowhere else.”
Leanne then replies by asking how does that make you feel, to which little Poppy replies with “sad”.
Trying to make her daughter feel better, Leanne insists: “But we’re going to be together.”
However, Poppy is still very upset and cries out that she misses her old dog ‘Milly’ as well.
Leanne again tries to reassure by saying, “when we get a new house we’ll get a new dog”.
“I don’t want to get a new dog” cries out Poppy before her mum says: “We’ll get a new house though won’t we.”
Poppy then cries further before asking: “Can I get a new dog?”
'It's not only parents that suffer'
Speaking today, Leanne, 30, said no child should have to suffer homelessness, as Poppy prepares for her third homeless Christmas.
She said: “I just wanted to show the Government how it’s not only the parents that suffer because we get on with it...It’s tearing the children apart, no child should be spending Christmas for the third time in homeless accommodation and by the looks of things it will probably be a fourth Christmas next year.”
However she did thank many people for their kind words.
She added: “Loads of lovely people have contacted me and a lot of women that are in the same situation and other people that used to be in the same situation.”
In response to the video, commenter Martina Therasa Power wrote: “Government should be ashamed!”, while Caroline O'Callaghan wrote: “Poor child...Everyone needs to get out and march, bring this country to a stand still, that’s what needs to happen.”
Marguerite Devlin said: “In tears here...please god you and your beautiful little girl be housed very soon.”
Jacqueline Farrelly commented: “So sad a child heartbroken over being homeless we had rough times in eighties, but I never saw much homelessness, in sixties I heard was same so why is Ireland like this in 2018! I know why, we all do.”
Sophie Flanagan said: “We should be on the f****** streets everyday, this is a f****** joke poor bleeding kids.”
Emma Byrne said: “Utterly heartbreaking to watch, this country is a bloody disgrace.”