Education has a role in raising awareness about homelessness
Sinn Fein Education Minister Caitríona Ruane has launched a new schools information pack on homelessness.
Speaking at the launch at Damhead Primary School, Coleraine, the Minister said:
"Homelessness is a problem that can affect virtually anyone in our community. It can have devastating impacts on families and children so it is important that we raise awareness as early as possible.
"Simon Community are to be congratulated on developing this resource pack which allows children to explore relationships with family and friends, as well as with the wider community. By raising awareness we can challenge the stereotypical image of the homeless and break down many barriers to understanding and so dealing with this.
"During this Homelessness Awareness Week we should all think of those who, often through no fault of their own, find themselves homeless."
The resource pack has been developed by the Simon Community in conjunction with CCEA (Council for the Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment). It will be used in Key Stage 2 studies on Mutual Understanding.
The resource pack has been piloted at Damhead Primary School, Coleraine, Edenbrook Primary School, Belfast and St Malachy's Primary School, Coleraine and will be made available to all schools.