This shocking film reveals the realities of Dublin’s homeless crisis

Homelessness is a serious problem in Dublin, and it's one that many people choose to ignore.

Cinematography student Fionn Kane highlighted the issue by shooting an emotive video called I'm Still Human, focusing on the hardship faced by James, a homeless man who has been living on the streets for six years.

Through the documentary, James reveals the horrific realities of life as a homeless man in Dublin, and tells the camera how he has been assaulted, humiliated and even urinated on while sleeping rough. 

James previously drew attention to the homeless crisis back in November, when he was the subject of a Facebook post by Alicia Gayson (we recommend giving the full post a read).

Alicia's post was spurred by an incident that happened in which she and James were shamed into leaving McDonalds on O'Connell Street due to James' homeless status, and were asked to move along despite the fact that they had paid for the meals they were consuming.

The post has since received 32,000 responses and has been shared almost 17,000 times. 

Alicia is a vocal advocate for the rights of homeless people, and also features in the short film to speak about the incident. She also discusses the attitudes towards homeless people, and refers to one man whom she was involved in a debate with on the FM104 show.

"He was referring in the most derogatory terms to homeless people. He was calling them junkie scumbags, saying that they were a plague on earth," she said.

"Not everybody that is homeless is an addict. Even if we looked at just the addicts, no mother gives birth to a child with the hopes and aspirations that her child was going to become what society deem as a junkie scumbag that's going to sit out on a bridge and beg."

"No human being, when growing up in school and asked what they want to be when they grow up, is going to say they want to be a homeless beggar on O'Connell Street."

Fionn Kane, the creative behind I'm Still Human, told SHEmazing! about his intentions for the documentary:

"I guess the thing that spurred me the most was the fact that there are human beings sleeping in such harsh conditions, whom society seem to have forgotten about."

"These people might be drug addicts, they might have mental health problems, but at the end of the day they feel empathy, compassion and emotions just like me and you," said the aspiring director, who was working on another documentary about homelessness volunteers when he discovered James and Alicia's story.

"I searched for Alicia on Facebook and finally found her. Between filming them both, I was out in town shooting at night with volunteer groups and meeting some lovely, genuine people who have fallen on hard times."

A Go Fund Me page has been set up by Alicia Gayson, in the hopes of raising enough money to improve James' quality of life and get him off the streets and into some permanent housing.

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