Healthy Ireland


Laois Local Community Development Committee (LCDC), understanding local needs and issues work to promote and improve the health and wellbeing of all people living in County Laois. Since 2017, Laois LCDC has successfully applied for and received grant funding through the Healthy Ireland Fund. The Healthy Ireland fund was created by the Department of Health to establish and support the implementation of Healthy Ireland programmes and projects which would improve the health and wellbeing of Ireland over the coming generation. Laois LCDC through a serious of partnerships and cross-sectoral cooperation administer programmes targeted at different groups throughout the county.

The emphasis on these programmes is the need to empower communities and people to look after their own health and wellbeing by improving health and promoting healthy lifestyles. Actions undertaken through Healthy Ireland are in line with the values of A Framework for Health and Well-being 2013-2025. Underpinning these values and ideas of improving health and wellbeing, is the Healthy-Laois-Plan-2018-2020.

Healthy Ireland has funded initiatives that have been far reaching and have left an impact on all those involved, whether participation involved training, learning, up-skilling or availability of equipment. Programmes have been designed to help address and respond to local community health and well-being needs throughout the county and are targeted at all age and socio economic groups. Laois County Council’s Community Section provides financial oversight and management in the delivery of the Healthy Ireland fund on behalf of Laois LCDC.

New Gambling Counselling & Support Service at Portlaoise Family Resource Centre

A new support service to assist people dealing with harmful gambling is now available at The Portlaoise Family Resource Centre.

The ‘National Problem Gambling Support Service’ was officially launched by the Gambling Awareness Trust in collaboration between Gambling Awareness Trust and the Family Resource Centre National Forum (FRCNF), which will see 20 Family Resource Centres (FRCs) across the country, including Portlaoise, provide professional and confidential counselling and support services to those experiencing harmful gambling and their families.

 Ireland has recently been ranked 4th in the EU for the prevalence of problem gambling with an estimated 55,000 problem gamblers and an astonishing €1.4 billion lost through betting and online gambling last year. It is estimated that for every problem gambler, there are 6 to 10 others impacted by their behaviour.

Those struggling with problem gambling are at an increased risk of developing mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety, as well as accumulating overwhelming debt. The ease of access to gambling through online sites and apps, combined with the recent stress of the covid-19 lockdowns have made support services such as this, an absolute necessity to families and individuals affected by problem gambling.

The Portlaoise Family Resource Centre, offer 1 to 1 and group support to those affected by Problem Gambling, as well as their family members and loved ones.

From mid- September The Portlaoise Family Resource Centre will be offering a new online support and initial contact point forum for Laois people who are experiencing problem gambling. In addition, The Portlaoise Family Resource Centre will also host an online information session for families and loved ones of people experiencing problem gambling. Those interested will be able to register in advance.

If you or someone you know are experiencing issues related to Problem Gambling, we urge you to reach out for more information.

For confidential and non-judgemental support, please reach out to The Portlaoise Family Resource Centre on

Landline: 057 8686 151

Mobile: 0873488062

Email: gamblingawareness@portlaoisefrc.ie

 

 

 

 

 

Make Way Day 2022 is back – Friday, 30th September, 2022

Make way on our streets
for people with disabilities.

Laois prepares for the annual one day-access blitz which is #MakeWayDay22.

Every corner of Ireland will be put to the test for basic access issues on Friday, September 30th, when the Make Way Day campaign returns.

Laois County Council will be supporting  #makewayday22 on Friday 30th September by creating awareness, around the access issues faced by the people of Laois, as they go about their daily business.

“Make Way Day” is a campaign that brings the disability and wider community together,  to consider the needs of people with disabilities in the public spaces we all share.

for more information on this initiative

Click here: http://makewayday.com/

It is led nationally by the Disability Federation of Ireland and is a unique collaboration across Ireland and the voluntary and local government sectors. But most of all it’s about people with disabilities.

                “Hey, this blocks my way!” is our message.

It’s too easy for us to label these issues as not my problem. You may be right in thinking that the car indiscriminately parked on the footpath is not an inconvenience to you but some day it might.  Not everyone was born with their disability.  All of us are getting older and maybe less mobile as time goes by and navigating through cars parked on a footpath can be challenging.  Some of our citizens that may be visually impaired may experience difficulty, encountering an advertising board outside your business.  We all have a role to play in making our streets easier to navigate.

As part of MakeWay Day 2022, Healthy Laois and Laois County Council in collaboration with IWA, NCBI, NLN & Rehabcare Portlaoise, Laois Sports Partnership &  Laois PPN and supported by Volunteer Laois will be conducting a number of Walkability Audits on Friday morning, 30th September in the following locations:

  • Portlaoise (departing the Parish Centre at 10.30am);
  • Stradbally (departing Arthouse at 11.30am) and
  • Rathdowney ( departing Cuan Bhride at 11.30am)

The objective of these audits is to identify what we can do to make our streets more accessible.

Remember everyone can get involved #MakeWayDay22.

Contact our Community Department, Laois County Council, if you wish to find out more on this initiative- 057-8664060 and/or 086-0653313 or email dce@laoiscoco.ie

 

 

 

World Suicide Prevention Day – Saturday 10th September  

The theme for World Suicide Prevention Day on 10th September 2022 is ‘Creating Hope Through Action’. 

It is a time when we can spread the message and demonstrate to those in our lives and communities, that there is hope.   Even though suicide is a very complex issue, we should always signal to people who are vulnerable or experiencing suicidal thoughts, that we care and want to support them.  This helps to create a more compassionate society where those who need to, feel more comfortable in coming forward to seek help.

We can all contribute and play our part in creating hope in our society by engaging in the following actions:

  • Increasing our awareness
  • Reaching in to offer support
  • Reaching out to seek support
  • Being the light for others and your community
  • Knowing where to turn for support and services

For further information please see https://www.hse.ie/eng/services/list/4/mental-health-services/connecting-for-life/news/world-suicide-prevention-day-2022.html

Various events will be held throughout the coming weeks in remembrance of those who have lost their lives to suicide and to give and show support for their loves ones and others who have been affected by their death.

Friday 9th September:                    Remembrance Mass: 10am – Laois Traveller Action Group, Bridge Street, Portlaoise.

Friday 9th September:                    Remembrance Mass: 6pm – Offaly Traveller Movement, Hazel Hub, Tullamore.

Midland Living Links who provide a supportive listening service to those who have been bereaved through suicide have organised the following services and invite all members of the public to join them:   (Co-ordinator Mobile: 086 1600 641)

Saturday 17th September:            Remembrance Mass and Tree of Hope Ceremony in the Tranquillity Garden:

11am – St. Brendan’s Catholic Church, Birr.

Sunday 25th September:               Tree of Hope Ceremony: 2pm – Memorial Garden, 6 Ridge Road, Portlaoise.

Sunday 25th September:               Tree of Hope Ceremony: 6.30pm – Brosna Park Kilbeggan, Co. Westmeath.

Sunday 2nd October:                      Remembrance Mass and Tree of Hope Ceremony:  12noon – St. Michael’s Catholic Church, Portarlington.

Pieta House provide a bereavement liaison service for those who have lost a family member or a friend or colleague to suicide and may like to avail of support with their grief.    Bernie Carroll is the Suicide Bereavement Liaison Officer for the Midlands and she can be contacted on 086 418 0088 or email: bernie.carroll@pieta.ie.

The following supports and services are available for all who may need to avail of them:

Local GPs and MiDoc Out of Hours Services: Midlands 1850 302 702; North East: 1850 777 911.

The Emergency Services 999/112 and Hospital Emergency Departments

Pieta House 24/7 Suicide Helpline 1800 247 247; Text HELP to 51444, Therapy Services Team: 0818 111 126.

The Samaritans 116 123; email jo@samaritans.ie

24/7 Free Text Support Service:  Text HELLO to 50808 / www.text50808.ie

Information on mental health for yourself and others and details of supports and services: www.yourmentalhealth.ie /  1800 111 888

Online counselling supports:  www.turn2me.ie / www.mymind.org

www.connectingforlifemidlandslouthmeath.ie for information on local supports and services, and info leaflets on self-harm, suicide and bereavement support.  Also details on all training programmes available, dates and registration process – see below also.

www.stresscontrol.ie  provides details of ‘Taking Control with Stress Control’ online programmes running throughout September.

Free awareness and skills training are available from the HSE to help prepare you to be in a position to recognise when someone may be at risk of suicide and give you the confidence, language and skills to be able to assist and connect them with helpful supports and services.

 

Information regarding the LivingWorks Start self-directed online programme and face to face safeTALK (suicide alertness skills training) is outlined below and on the booking website: https://bookwhen.com/suicidepreventiontrainingmidlands

 LivingWorks Start (self-directed online programme) is for those who want to help prevent suicide and develop the skills to assist someone who may be at risk of suicide.  It can be completed in 1½ hours and includes a four-step model and impactful videos and simulations.

SafeTALK is a 3hr ‘suicide alertness’ programme that prepares participants to identify and engage with persons who may be having thoughts of suicide by using the steps of TALK (Tell, Ask, Listen and Keepsafe). Individual safeTALK Workshops can be delivered upon request to groups with a min of 12 participants by contacting your local Resource Officer (contact below).

Upcoming workshops – Booking via: https://bookwhen.com/suicidepreventiontrainingmidlands

Laois/Offaly: Longford/Westmeath:
Date and Time: Venue: Date and Time: Venue:
8th Sept: 9.30am – 1pm

15th Sept.: 9.30am – 1pm

3rd Nov: 9.30am – 1pm

Tullamore, Co. Offaly. Portlaoise, Co. Laois.

Tullamore, Co. Offaly

22nd Sept: 9.30am – 1pm.

3rd October: 9.30am- 1pm

Mullingar, Co. Westmeath

Athlone, Co. Westmeath

The prevention of loss of life through suicide requires the efforts of many – each and everyone of us, healthcare professionals, educators, community members and political officials and governments and the positive effects of all this collaborative, co-ordinated and integrated work can be sustainable and have a massive impact.  On September 10th join with many others across the world who are playing their part in the prevention of suicide –  https://www.iasp.info/.     In all our own and unique ways, we can make a difference!

Irish Mens Shed launch new Walkshop Programme
As part of celebrating Mens Health Week, the Irish Mens Shed’s Association today launched a new Walkshop resource for its members across Ireland. The resource will be posted out to over 450 Mens Shed’s in Ireland and will be available online.
Led by Laois Sports Partnership, who provided the keen Shedders with Fitsticks in conjunction with Healthy Laois, Laois Men’s Shed welcomed Navan, Slane and Waterford Shedders on a 5k walk around Abbeyleix Bog.
The new resource was created in partnership with Mens Sheds, Mental Health Ireland and Get Walking Ireland. It aims to encourage Men to make the first steps back toward Shed’s after a difficult two years of Lockdowns, disruption and isolation. Many Shed’s are offering to do Walk Swap’s to host other visiting Shed’s to their local area to share their local knowledge and experience. Walkshop’ Resource – https://t.co/qI0qdNUgSX

MINISTER FRANK FEIGHAN VISITS YOUTH WORK IRELAND LAOIS HQ

 

The Minister was introduced to the Regional Director of Youth Work Ireland, Laois, Mr Clive Davis and was taken on a tour of its headquarters in Portlaoise. The Minister was briefed by Mr Davis on the work being carried out in the community.

“Youth Work Ireland Laois are delighted to be in the position to deliver the Positive Laois programme in Laois. The project objectives came from interactions and listening to issues directly facing young people. As the only Laois based Youth Organisation in the county, we are so proud to be able to share our amazing space with as many young people as possible. We continue to use Youth Work to facilitate change to support the development of our Young People throughout the County”

“The Art Therapist Programme was also a key initiative delivered by Youth Work Ireland Laois” continued Mr Davis. He outlined that “young people who present with emotional intolerance/stress often have not developed the verbal skills required to express this distress, and Art therapy provides the model for non-verbal communication and expression in a safe and therapeutic environment. Art Therapy uses creative and adaptive skills in providing varying treatment intervention modalities to address these varied presentations in a client friendly and responsive manner”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MINISTER FRANK FEIGHAN DISCUSSES SCHOOL SUPPORT PACK INITIATIVE

Minister Frank Feighan TD, Minister of State for Public Health, Well Being and National Drugs Strategy was welcomed by the Healthy Ireland Action Partner – Laois Partnership where he had an opportunity to meet with the staff of Laois Partnership, who are an Action Partner collaborating with Healthy Laois . Liam Ramsbottom, SICAP Team Leader, Mary Keane Community Development Worker and Karen Bambrick, Youth & Community Worker, Laois Partnership displayed some Support packs that were provided to children and families during the Pandemic. She said “While meeting people on their doorsteps when delivering food support packs, concerns were heard about the cost of returning to school”.  Liam Ramsbottom said that the collaborations between Agencies was instrumental in the success of our work on the ground.

“Healthy Ireland funding  provided up to 543 school packs to children across Laois (359 primary & 184 secondary), and fresh food support packs to 60 families all which  alleviated the pressure for parents and allowing these children to return to school with confidence”.

Minister Frank Feighan said “I am so impressed with the breadth of work, that is being undertaken in Laois for the Health and Wellbeing of the various communities.  Over the last number of years, Healthy Ireland has invested in several initiatives,  in partnership with the Local Community Development Committee and the Children and Young Persons Services Committee.  I can see today the benefit of ensuring that these structures are empowered to design and deliver actions locally, that support people in Laois to live healthy lives.”

Men’s Shed Ukelele session enjoyed by Minister Feighan.

Minister Frank Feighan, Minister of State for Public Health, Well Being and National Drugs Strategy was welcomed to Laois Music Centre, Portlaoise, where he was welcomed by Mr Joe Cunningham, Chief Executive of Laois Offaly Education and Training Board and Ms Nuala kelly, Resource Worker, Music Generation Laois.

Music Generation Laois (MGL) is an inclusive and accessible music programme, part of Laois Offaly Education and Training Board and supported by Laois County Council. Nuala Kelly, Lead Musician of the Healthy Laois funded initiative “Musical Memories

Laois” introduced the Minister to the Members of Mountmellick & Portlaoise Men’s Shed. She advised that the programme “ began as an inter-generational song-singing project with children from Paddock NS – a participating MGL school – singing on-line for residents of Abbeyleix and Mountmellick CNUs and  highlighted the important role that the  Musical Memories initiative had,  in  addressing the social isolation felt by those in long-term care units from the beginning of the pandemic.  ‘Musical Memories with Music Generation Laois began in response to the effects of social isolation experienced by older people in the early stages of the pandemic in 2020.

Originating in care home settings across Laois, the programme has since expanded to Primary Schools and Men’s Sheds. In-person outdoor sessions took place in Shaen and Mountmellick CNU last Summer.

There was also an opportunity for  Grandparents to participate via Zoom and we had grandparents joining in from Cork, Kildare, Waterford, Kilkenny and we are hoping to re-introduce grandparents in person before the end of the school year in 2022.  .

The highlight of Musical Memories in 2021 was the visit of Singer-Songwriter John Spillane to both schools and both Men’s Sheds just before Christmas 2021.

The current phase, funded by Healthy Ireland, saw the introduction of weekly Ukulele sessions to Portlaoise and Mountmellick Men’s Sheds, and has been an overwhelmingly positive experience for the participants.  Zoom sessions continue in Mountmellick CN Unit and in-person visits to Shaen Hospital will re-commence in the Summer. The project adapts as necessary to a blended delivery of on-line and in-person sessions.

Ray Harte- Director of Irish Mens Shed Association  said “We are delighted with the help and support we have received from Healthy Ireland Laois in delivering a host of new exercise and wellbeing programmes to our members”

Minister Frank Feighan said “I am so impressed with the breadth of work, that is being undertaken in Laois for the Health and Wellbeing of the various communities.  Over the last number of years, Healthy Ireland has invested in several initiatives,  in partnership with the Local Community Development Committee and the Children and Young Persons Services Committee.  I can see today the benefit of ensuring that these structures are empowered to design and deliver actions locally, that support people in Laois to live healthy lives.”

 

 

Ireland’s 1st Fit Sticks Trail comes to Laois

The Derryounce Fit Sticks Trail funded by Healthy Ireland Laois and co-ordinated by Laois Sports Partnership has now opened and is the first of its kind in Ireland.

Fit Stick Trails are designed to include a solid flat surface with a low incline making it very appropriate for those with poor balance. Along this particular trail, there are various signposts with exercises for participants to execute including a warmup station at the beginning of the trail.

This trail will be a fabulous addition to the county of Laois. Participants included Men’s Shed, Parkinson’s Group, Woodlands for Health Mental Health Group, Older Adult Groups, Care centres for people with disabilities with intellectual & physical disabilities. They have found the use of the poles/ fit sticks very helpful with posture, gait and mobility & strength.

Laois Sports Partnership funded by Healthy Ireland Laois purchased activator poles from Fit Walk Ireland and delivered programmes throughout Laois. The social aspect of the classes is as important as the exercise. These are all done at one’s own pace, always light-hearted and ending with a sing song. Since 2020,16 programmes have been delivered throughout Laois and tutors have been trained to deliver these programmes.

For more information on these programmes, contact Eimear or Catriona.

Eimear-    Email: ebryant@laoissports.ie       Phone: 086 0111722

Catriona- Email: cslattery@laoissports.ie   Phone:086 7935234

 

HSE Suicide Prevention Training Schedule: July – October 2022

Following the Covid-19 restrictions of the past two years, the HSE are now commencing to resume delivery of face to face programmes on a gradual basis.   See attached an outline of the training schedule for the next few months which is also outlined on their booking website (see below)  – as additional programmes are scheduled they will be added there.

Click Here – Booking Link

Click Here – HSE Training July – October 2022 Schedule

Click – Info re Suicide Prevention Training Programmes Info re HSE Suicide Prevention Training Programmes July 2022