Film festival highlights plight of homeless

The Beanbag Cinema in Belfast's Cathedral Quarter
Paul Ainsworth

A mini-film festival in Belfast is to help highlight the plight of homeless people in the city and beyond.

The Shelter NI Film Festival is being held next month in Belfast’s Beanbag Cinema, and will screen movies that tackle the issue of homelessness – a growing problem in areas such as Belfast, where earlier this year four people living on the street died in as many weeks.

The films screened at the festival on December 1–3 include the 2015 British drama Hector, directed by Jake Gavin which tells the tale of a homeless man’s Christmas journey to a London shelter.

Two French dramas make up the rest of the programme: 2009’s refugee tale Welcome and Lovers on the Bridge – a 1991 tale of a romance between two young homeless on the streets of Paris.

The festival is being held to mark Homelessness Awareness Week (HAW), and a spokesperson for the Shelter NI charity behind the event explained: “HAW is an annual week of social, educational and awareness raising events organised across the country to highlight the issue of homelessness, and to mark the continued efforts of organisations, staff, and service users working in the sector.”

The Beanbag Cinema is at 5 Exchange Place in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter.

For more information on the festival visit the shelter NI Facebook page, and for tickets visit

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