A body providing support to the families of drug addicts has appealed to Kildare County Councillors for financial support.
At the Council’s Maynooth Municipal District meeting on Friday, July 6, Noreen Ardill, from Kill based Hope Cottage, said that the support it was providing was proving “very fruitful” for the families of people with drug addictions.
But she told councillors that Hope, part of a multi drug support strategy, is struggling for funds and needs at least the equivalent of one counsellor’s salary soon.
She said drugs issues affected all classes, not just the unemployed.
Drug debt and intimidation were a problem for families, not just addicts.
She said there was a lot of fear and shame associated with the drug problem.
Apart from herself, there were two part time people on a community employment scheme at Hope Cottage. There was no services for children under eleven.
Ms Ardill said there was a lack of service generally for this type of counseling in the north Kildare area and more was needed. Ms Ardill, who said she was asked to move from another organisation to take up her role, said there was a huge waiting list and that they needed to secure a budget for 2019.
She was afraid the progress they had made with some people would be halted. They were fearful the supports would not be sustained.
Ms Ardill said funding came from a number of sources and there were now around 50 family members dealing with them.
Cllr Brendan Weld said services seemed to be fragmented and Hope was “begging” for money to help.”
He said he was “appalled” that there was no service for the under eleven age group.
He said drugs were behind a lot of issues being tackled by councillors.
Cllr Padraig McEvoy said he had been phoned by one councillor colleague who was on a holiday to ask to help some with an addiction related issue.
Director of Services, Sonya Kavanagh, said the Council liaised with a number of bodies in county Kildare.
Ms Kavanagh said that the Health Services Executive and Tusla needed to help as well.
The members said they would do their best to help the organisation when it came to budget time.
Around 22% of Hope Cottage’s clients came from the Leixlip, Maynooth and Celbridge area.
Other clients came from Rathcoffey, Kilcock and other parts of north Kildare.
Ms Ardill said there family members up to eighty years of age coming to the service for help.