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Dublin: 3 °C Friday 3 April, 2020

'You're giving back dignity': Meet the man who fits dentures for the homeless outside the GPO

Kevin Shanahan sees around 20 people during each of his O’Connell Street nighttime sessions.


LEIXLIP DENTAL TECHNICIAN Kevin Shanahan sets up his equipment outside the GPO in Dublin after work each Friday evening.

He sees about 20 people during each session – and puts in 15-20 hours of work each week at his lab. His clients, he said, have trouble getting medical cards as they often have no fixed address.

More and more people have been seeking his services in recent months, Shanahan said. Asked why he decided to volunteer his services, he responded:

When you look at someone with no teeth they’ve lost their confidence they’ve lost a bit of dignity. When you give someone teeth you give them a little bit of confidence and you’ll find they’ll smile more – so you’re building a person from the inside out.

Volunteers also provide haircuts outside the northside landmark each Friday – and two groups give out sandwiches, soup and other hot food.

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About the author:

Daragh Brophy and Andrew Roberts

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