After sending more than 150 emails to landlords and receiving just two replies, a 21-year-old student is living out of her car in Galway city as her search to find accommodation has become dire.

University of Galway student Jessica McGirr said the Budget 2023 measures that have been announced for students are positive, but they don’t help to address the issue that there are very few rentals available in the country.

She welcomes that the student contribution fee has been reduced by €500, saying it will especially benefit students whose parents don’t qualify for the SUSI grant but they pay their own fees.


A student nurse has said he has slept in his car between work placement shifts to try to avoid the rising cost of fuel.

Jake Benjamin Smart is a mental health student nurse at Ulster University’s Magee campus in Londonderry.

The third-year student is calling on the Department of Health to increase the travel allowance paid to students.

Health Minister Robin Swann announced an increase in payments for most health and social care workers last month.

In a statement, the Department of Health said they are reviewing the mileage rate to be paid to students for the next academic year, starting in September.

Speaking to BBC Radio Foyle, the third-year nursing student said that himself and many of his peers are struggling during the cost-of-living crisis.


We are really in trouble when our uni students and our nurses are reduced to sleeping in their cars as they can’t find a place to rent and the rent to pay for it.

All homelessness is a very distressing problem.

And it’s on the increase.

The primary responsibility for this lies with the government.

The government needs to ompose fines on the owners of empty properties.

They should also impose rent caps on landlords.

The right to shelter is a basic human right

The Churches, including the RCC should not be allowed to have big empty properties.

Jesus did say:

“I was a stranger and you made me welcome”.




The Guardian

A 90-year-old Catholic cardinal and five prominent pro-democracy campaigners have pleaded not guilty in court in Hong Kong for failing to properly register a humanitarian fund they set up to help people arrested in anti-government protests in 2019.

Cardinal Joseph Zen, one of Asia’s highest-ranking Catholic clerics, and his fellow campaigners were arrested in May for “colluding with foreign forces” under a national security law that Beijing imposed on Hong Kong to crack down on dissent. All were trustees of the 612 Humanitarian Relief Fund, which provided legal and financial assistance to more than 2,000 people prosecuted for their part in the 2019 pro-democracy protests. The fund is charged with not properly registering under the societies ordinance, a colonial-era law from 1911.

The fund disbanded in 2021 after police ordered it to hand over information on its donors and beneficiaries.

Prosecutors on Monday told West Kowloon court that the fund, which drew about 270m Hong Kong dollars (£32m) in donations between June 2019 and October 2021, had “political motivation” and supported anti-government groups and activists, local news portal 01 and public broadcaster RTHK reported.


Pope Francis and the Vatican have turned their back on poor Cardinal Zen (90) in order not to annoy the Chinese Communist government.

Cardinal Zen went on trial on Monday for his role in helping those opposed to the behaviour of the Chinese government in Hong Kong.

Its another example of how the RCC intervenes in politics – and always on the side of powerful and corrupt.

China has given the Vatican a lot of money after doing a deal with them a few years ago.

And, in spite of this deal the Chinese continue to imprison and persecute many Catholic bishops, priests and laity loyal to Rome.

The RCC played a negative role in Irish politics for many decades.

Francis himself stands accused of working with the Junta in Argentina.

They did deals with Mussilini, Franco and Hitler.

The abandonment of Cardinal Zen is a disgrace.