There was a huge turnout for the 49th AGM of KARE last Monday night as the organisation celebrated 50 years in existence.
Guest of honour, Ray D'Arcy was in attendance at Hotel Keadeen in Newbridge. He interviewed a panel made up parents, people with disabilities, and staff to find out their views on the organisation.
They told the large attendance about the difference KARE makes to their lives.
KARE CEO, Christy Lynch said it was a fantastic night and he thanked everyone involved in the organisation.
"I also want to thank Ray D'Arcy for all his help throughout the years. Any time we ask him to attend any event, he never says no. He has been brilliant to KARE," he said.
Mr Lynch said the primary focus of KARE was on the people using the services, and to ensure they were happy with the way things are run.
"Our staff are extremely dedicated and flexible, and if something isn't working they are willing to try a new approach," he added.
He pointed out the organisation was run extremely well, and KARE achieved an overall 93% compliance rate with HIQA as well as being awarded the European EFQM Excellence Award. This is extremely hard to achieve, putting it on a par with other international recipients such as BMW.
KARE provides support to people who have an intellectual disability and their families.
Founded in 1967, the organisation works in Kildare, West Wicklow and East Offaly. Supporting over 400 local families, it has a huge part to play in the community.
"It's important to listen to people with disabilities, because they are the important people, it's great to get recognition and win awards, but the focus for KARE has always been, and will always be the person with the disability, they are always at the core of everything we do," said Mr Lynch.
There are a number of events planned to mark the 50th anniversary throughout the year including a huge anniversary party in Toughers in July and a Luka Bloom concert in December.