Housing charity Respond has said that despite the impact of Covid-19 on the construction industry it is ahead of target and plans to deliver 700 new homes this year, 200 more than its initial targets.

Head of communications and advocacy at Respond Niamh Randall told RTÉ's Morning Ireland there had been a really concerted effort across voluntary organisations and statutory authorities to limit the impact of the coronavirus on homeless people.

Respond will today launch its annual report setting out its objectives and targets for the next three years.

Ms Randall said that Respond and its partners have worked hard to get back on track after delays to the building industry as a result of the initial lockdown, but is ahead of target to increase supply of homes.

She said that Respond has 1,288 homes under construction across 18 counties including Dublin, Cork, Galway, Limerick, Kildare and Waterford this year.

It is on target to deliver 700 new homes a year over the coming five years, that is ahead of the 2,500 homes committed to for that period in 2019.

She said the efforts were as a result of hard work by the staff in the Department of Housing, local authorities and Respond, who are working to build homes as soon as possible.

Respond manages 4,500 homes across Ireland in which more than 10,000 tenants live. 

She said supporting people to move quickly into homes has been key to this, as well as supplying supports to those in emergency accommodation and to families as they get set up in a home.

She said the Housing First model is key to providing homes along with supports for children and youth supports, trauma informed care and mental health supports.

She added that "critically it is about supplying homes quickly".

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