New initiative giving older people a voice in Kildare

New initiative launched at Hotel Keadeen, Newbridge

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New initiative giving older people a voice in Kildare

Guest speaker,Peter Walker; Anne Daly, Co. Kildare Leader Partnership; Denise Croke, and Gaye Dempsey, Older Voices Kildare; Anne Kearney, HSE; and Jacqui Gage, Partners Training for Transformation.

Over 70 people recently gathered in Newbridge’s Keadeen Hotel to hear about a new initiative being piloted by Older Voices Kildare, called Social Prescription.

Denise Croke, project co-ordinator with Older Voices Kildare said she was absolutely thrilled with the attendance on Friday July 14, and the support for the initiative, which is both a model of community engagement and health promotion.

Ms Croke was joined on the day by Peter Walker from HSE Donegal, who outlined how the model was working very successfully in Donegal.

“In principle it’s a very simple idea” said Ms. Croke.

“You take a person who is experiencing negative impacts in their lives from experiences of exclusion, they meet a dedicated link person, who tries to link them back into their own communities.”

Referrals can come from GPs, primary health teams, social workers, or the individual themselves, and activities included are exercise, gardening, learning, bibliotherapy like the Shelf Help initiative run by the Library Services, and art and creativity.

This is not an exhaustive list by any means, just an indication of the kind of scope of the community based activities that may be available to someone wishing to avail of a “social prescription”. Ms Croke advised that anyone interested in hearing more, should contact Older Voices Kildare on 087 14116689.