The Vatican has now completed construction work on three showers and a barber’s booth for Rome’s homeless under the colonnades of St Peter’s Square.
The showers, which will be available most days of the year, have been installed in an existing lavatory block used by pilgrims and tourists visiting the Vatican.
Nuns will welcome the homeless to the refurbished facility giving each a shower kit containing a change of underwear, towel, soap, deodorant, tooth brush and tooth paste, according to Vatican Radio.
The 3 showers and the barber’s booth have been installed in an existing lavatory block used by pilgrims and tourists visiting the Vatican area that was completely refurbished for this purpose. The showers will be available every day, except on Wednesday during the Pope’s general audience and when celebrations take place, either in St Peter’s Basilica or in the Square.
The barber service will be available on Monday between 9am and 3pm. A number of barbers in Rome have volunteered to offer their services as well as final-year students from a hairdressing school in Rome. Sisters from Mother’s Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity Order will be among those helping to welcome the homeless who come to use the showers.
Each of the homeless people using the shower units will receive two free kits, a complete change of underwear and a kit containing towel, soap, toothpaste and brush, deodorant plus razor and shaving cream for the men. Many of the articles have been offered free of charge by various firms and private individuals who have wanted to show their solidarity with this project. The Pope’s Almoner will be responsible for purchasing, as needed, future supplies using money raised from the selling of parchments with a Papal Blessing.
The shower block is expected to open its doors for Rome’s homeless people very shortly.