Earlier this week this photo was shared on the Humans of Ireland Facebook page. It shows George, a homeless man, and his plea for somewhere to spend Christmas this year.
Humans of Ireland is a Facebook page on which a photographer will take a picture of someone from Ireland and upload it with an accompanying quote about their life. The format took off in New York and has now been replicated all around the world.
The picture shows George, a homeless man who was living in Kinsale, County Cork, at the time.
The owner of the page, photographer Lee Furlong, noticed an outpouring of generosity from people reading the page in response to George's picture and quote. He described it in his blog:
The response was amazing, from comments, private mails, friends texting me offering information on services for homeless people on Christmas day, to people inviting him to their own home for Christmas dinner and bed for the night and some even offering to pay for a hotel/dinner.
However, there was one person who replied to him that stood out.
George's sister Sheelagh had got in touch with Furlong because she hadn't seen him for 12 years. She explained their mother was sick, and she wanted to invite George over for Christmas.
Furlong managed to track George down again, and he put George in touch with his sister. Later, he received a phone call from George:
[He] called to tell me that he was returning to the family home next Wednesday. We had a really nice chat, he sounded so upbeat compared to our first meeting.
He thanked me, wished me a Merry Christmas and hoped that we stay in touch. I returned his well wishes and [said] that I hoped he enjoys Christmas Dinner with his family this year.