Can Do. Views. News. and. Person Centred. Partnership. Innovation. RehabCare Newsletter Autumn People First. RehabCare wins Excellence Award

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1 News and Views RehabCare Newsletter Autumn 2006 What s in this issue? RehabCare Latest News Pg 1 RehabCare UK Pg 2 East/South East North East/Midlands President McAleese Launches RehabCare Volunteer Programme Person Centred People First Can Do Partnership Innovation On Thursday 14th September, the President of Ireland Mary McAleese was joined by Ireland soccer manager Steve Staunton, top TV presenter Caroline Morahan, GAA hurling great DJ Carey and star Gaelic footballer Steven McDonnell as she launched RehabCare s new national volunteer programme in Dublin. RehabCare has been celebrating its 10th birthday this year and the Volunteer Programme has been developed as part of these 10-year anniversary celebrations. The Programme will give the people from your communities the chance to volunteer in a RehabCare service in a way that suits their skills and talents - involving anything from cooking lessons and literacy skills training, to sports coaching, drama workshops and music lessons. Anyone aged over 18 will be eligible to volunteer and they can commit to spending time from an hour a week providing support to RehabCare. Editor s Note If you would like further information on any RehabCare services in your area, please contact us at: RehabCare, Roslyn Park, Beach Road, Sandymount, Dublin 4 Tel: / Website: Our editor Kathleen Morris is currently away on maternity leave. We d like to send our congratulations and best wishes to Kathleen who had a beautiful baby girl called Katie on 17th August. While Kathleen is away I ve been looking after News and Views and thoroughly enjoyed reading all your articles. This West/North West Pgs 3-6 Pgs 7-13 Pgs South/Midwest Pgs Creative Writing Pg 21 NRAC Pgs 22 Information Bulletin Pgs 23 RehabCare wins Excellence Award Speaking at the launch, President McAleese said: I hope, and believe, that many people from all walks of life, will join RehabCare s activities, and will find through their involvement with this great work, a level of deep personal fulfilment that few other things in life can match. Where the culture of volunteerism is strong our society is strong and volunteers with Rehab play a unique role in assisting those with disability to grow in confidence, in skill and in love of life. issue shows just what you have been getting up to over the summer including going on holidays and fun activities. A special thank you to everyone who entered the creative writing competition we had an amazing response and it wasn t easy to choose the winner(s)! Take a look at who won on page 21. Best wishes, Deirdre Carroll On Thursday 12th October RehabCare was crowned the National Title Winner at the 36th National Quality and Excellence Awards hosted by the EIQA (Excellence Ireland Quality Association). RehabCare topped the list of more than 2,500 other companies to win this prestigious award, which is a great achievement for all involved. We'll have more about this award win in the next edition.

2 RehabCare UK Golf Fundraiser for UK Services The Rehab UK Annual Golf Classic took place recently at the Moor Park Golf Club in London. 36 teams took part, some having travelled from Ireland to support the Classic. Pat Ruddy, Chairman of the London Classic, who came from Belmullet, Co. Mayo, can be seen along with his golf committee, handing over the cheque for 55,000 to Kevin Purvis the Director of UK Services, RehabCare. East/South East Our Visit to Aras an Uachtarán On the 4th of July Elizabeth McHugh and I went up to Dublin to attend a garden party hosted by President McAleese in Aras an Uachtarán. We arrived there for 2.30 pm. We were very nervous about meeting the President and her husband but they were both lovely people. We had a very enjoyable time while we were there. By Adrian Dermody, RehabCare Carlow Art Exhibition for North East Brain Injury Centre Image In Mind An art exhibition was held at the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Newcastle promoting our North East Brain Injury Centre as a location for rehabilitation specialists, on Wed 12th & Thursday 13th July earlier this year. The event brought together service users and our many regional associates to reflect on the process of community and vocational rehabilitation services as well as look forward to improvements and developments in such provision. Funded by the Arts Council England, service users in Newcastle who have sustained acquired brain injuries have been working to produce original, thought provoking and powerfully emotive artworks motivated by their experiences which include accidents, assaults, strokes, heart attacks and viral infections. The project explores the therapeutic contribution of the visual arts, including painting, sculpture, photography and video, to the individual s psychological adjustment and rehabilitation after injury. Jeremy Hunt MP visits London Brain Injury Centre On the 16th May, Behjat Hurren and her team in London were very pleased to welcome Jeremy Hunt MP to the LBIC. He spoke about his initial impressions of the Centre and the astounding service that it provided to local people with acquired brain injury. As well as being guided around the Centre and seeing first hand the work that goes on, he sat and chatted casually with some clients to find out about their experiences. Within the group there were six clients; made up of two who had suffered brain injury from a stroke, three who had suffered from vehicle accidents and one who had suffered from a seizure and brain swelling (encephalitis). Both the age and sex of the clients reflected the variety of people that make-up our clients. The reasons behind their injuries and the follow-on consequences of their recovery often share close similarities. It was good to hear from each client that they were completely satisfied, and in a couple of cases even surprised, with how their own programme of rehabilitation was progressing. It was described as being effective and responsive to individual needs. At the same time it clearly recognises the adapting to new circumstances that is required by all, to ensure the realistic and positive development of their new aspirations. Being clearly impressed by what he had seen and heard during his visit, Jeremy talked about the determination of people here being astounding and he expressed the belief that other people have no conception of what it s all about. So what might the political future hold for the necessary continuation of services like ours? In his words the benefit system doesn t really help at the moment, and universal agreement was reached following his comment that we (the Conservative Party) want to extend the help currently available to a much broader group of people. So, as ever, we live in hope and you can be sure that we will continue to fight our corner! Celebrating RehabCare 10 with Chris Doran in Waterford I felt excited about getting up on the RehabCare 10 day. I also felt a bit nervous about showing the people around the centre and explaining to them about RehabCare. I had to explain to them about the different activities and programmes that we do, and explain what RehabCare is all about and how RehabCare was founded. Mary Power, Glenn Walsh and the rest of the lads were proud of themselves because of the great job they did on their speeches. They spoke about what Marie Fennelly, Elizabeth McHugh and Bridget Dunne attending Riverdance in the Gaiety Theatre with a group from RehabCare Carlow. we do in RehabCare and about how they like it. Also about how they enjoy the programmes and the work they do. They also spoke about going out and doing different activities and also about how they enjoy setting different goals and how they achieve them. People began to arrive at pm for the open day. Everyone was impressed by the different photographs, pictures and displays we had made about the work and activities we do in RehabCare. Before the speeches we had a buffet meal for everyone. It was very tasty. When Chris Doran arrived everyone got to meet him. He was made to feel very welcome. We found him to be very cheerful and helpful and we thanked him for coming. I hope that RehabCare will be here in ten more years time. I hope that I will be in my own house and on the supported employment scheme and that the staff will stay the same. But who knows what the future will bring. By Maria Allen, RehabCare Waterford My Job I started a new job at the end of January in Fleetwood Health Care in Bray. First I did three days every week Monday and Wednesday and Thursday from 10:00 to 12:00 pm. Now I do a five-day week, 10:30 am to 1:00 pm every day. This is a part time job. I come into RehabCare in the afternoons. I am lucky RehabCare is only across the road. It s a very cool job and I have made new friends. My job involves packaging Health Care products. I am good at reading numbers, which helps me with this job as I also have to sort codes on invoices. I also do work on the computer now, I like this a lot. I am starting a computer course in college in September, this will help me with my job. I am a very busy woman! By Marian O Rourke, The Phoenix Service RehabCare Bray. 2 3

3 East/South East East/South East Friendship Friendship is a gift I have a friendship in the post! Friendship is important because you need someone to talk to Friendships are great because friends are good to me when I go out with them. Friendship is me and someone else, It means someone else cares for me. Love I love my sister Love is... my family I love shopping in Dublin I love people that love me To love even one person in the whole world is a good feeling I love my football club I love my niece and my nephew because they really love me I love living alone We love RehabCare because the staff mix with us and bring us out. They talk to us. The Summer Holidays with my Family Myself & my family sat down at home one evening & started to plan our two weeks summer holidays. First, we decided where we wanted to go. We started our holiday on a day trip to Dublin City where we went to look around & did some shopping in Grafton Street, Moore Street & in St. Stephen s Green Shopping Centre. Before we went back home, we went to Dublin City s famous Anglican, Episcopal, Gothic, Holy, Diocesan Cathedral called Christ Church and we took some photos there too. The following days of our holiday brought us to look around and also do some shopping in Wexford Town, Clonmel in Co. Tipperary, Mallow in Co. Cork. For our two last holiday day trips we went to Killarney Town in Co. Kerry, where we took some photos outside an Irish Country House Hotel called Darby O Gills there was a film named after it staring the Scottish, James Bond star, Seán Connery. From there we went along the Inch coastline in the southwest of Kerry, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. There we had a little rest before we went to Dingle, the seaside fishing town. We took photos of ourselves & the famous bronze-like copper sculpture of the dolphin Fungi & an anchor sculpture called Undertow made from fishing ropes. Later we went home. Overall we had a good time. By Mary Nora Curran, RehabCare Kilkenny Service users from RehabCare Carlow supporting Kathryn Thomas in the Helix for the Special Olympics. Left to Right: Michael McGough, Carol Langton, Kathryn Thomas, Irene Daly Day trip On Wednesday 26th July RehabCare in Waterford had their annual day trip. 31 clients and 7 staff travelled to Bray, Co. Wicklow to the National Sea Life Centre. On the way up we sang songs and Donal played the guitar. We stopped for morning tea and scones in Joanne s coffee shop in Gorey. It was very nice. We continued on to Bray. We had a guided tour around the Sea Life Centre. Pat, the guide, let us touch a big crab and a star fish. We kept our distance from the sharks! We enjoyed it very much. After the tour we had a picnic lunch on the Prom in Bray. There was a lovely band playing music while we ate. After lunch we travelled home to Waterford and had our evening meal in the Bridge Hotel. A lovely day was had by all. By Pat Cassin and Mary Power, RehabCare Waterford Both Poems written together by Joe Kearney, Jane Donnelly, Catherine O Rourke, Marion O Sullivan and Bridget Kavanagh (RehabCare Bray) Trees Trees are very important. Trees get broken when we have storms because they fall down. Trees are bushy and cool to sit under. Trees are nice at Christmas time. Trees are nice on a windy day. I like to watch them move. Trees have large trunks and big roots. By Liz Doyle, Amanda Finnegan, Deirdre McCormack, John McMahon & Denis Taylor, RehabCare Ballyfermot Women s Mini Marathon We took part in this year s women s mini marathon on 5th June We started our training in March, ten weeks before the marathon. We each had a training programme that we could use at home. The training programme was a timetable for when to go on walks and for how along. It also consisted of stretching exercises to do after the warm up and cool down. We trained every Wednesday afternoon with Lesley, Francine and Bernadette. Our training walks took us along the pier, the seafront towards Sandycove and around the outskirts of Dun Laoghaire. We met at Pearse Street Station on the day of the marathon. We then went to the Ginger Man for some refreshments. Then we went to the starting area. It was a lovely day. The walk started at three o clock. The start was very slow as there were a lot of women doing the walk. It took a while for us to cross the starting line. There were water stops and music stands at various stages along the way. There were people from all over the country. They were raising money for different charities e.g. Cystic Fibrosis, Irish Cancer Society etc. Everyone was in great form and was friendly. There were several men dressed as women. There was one man dressed as Princess Leah from Star Wars! Towards the end of the walk we began to feel tired and had some aches and pains, but nothing to stop us from crossing the finish line. We felt good when we saw the finish line. We were all in great form when we crossed it. We each got a medal and we were all delighted with this and very proud of our achievement. Afterwards we took photos at St. Stephen s Green. A week or so later we all went for coffee and cake to celebrate. We raised a lot of money for Childline. We are looking forward to doing it all again in By Ciara Garvey, Rita Dunne, Marian O Flanagan, Rachel Treanor, Karina Stephenson and Sally Lovegrove, RehabCare Dun Laoghaire 4 5

4 East/South East South North East/Midlands East/East Table Quiz Our Art exhibition was due to take place on July 3rd of this year. We needed money to pay for the framing of the pictures, and for other expenses. So we decided to raise the money by having a table quiz. The quiz took place in the Royal St. George Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire on June 9th. Rachel Treanor is one of service users and her mum very kindly arranged that we could have the room in the Yacht Club. The ninth was a Friday and we held the quiz that evening. The attendance was very good. Lots of people came and paid 10 euro each to participate in the quiz. The quizmaster got the ball rolling and we all got down to answering Life can be heavy going at times so a little light relief can relieve the tedium. A small flutter on the horses or the dogs can be exciting and maybe even profitable. There is of course the National Lotto, which the whole country subscribes to, and many people become millionaires over night. Winning Streak on RTE creates its own brand of madness and most participants go quietly round the twist. Racing is another popular sport. I don t back horses or go racing as a rule but I make an exception for the Grand National. Last week I backed five horses two euros each way. Four of them were in with a chance and the other was an outsider. One of my bets was leading the field when obstructed the questions. We held a raffle at the end and there were a large number of prizes for the lucky winners. The prizes were very generously donated by local businesses in Dun Laoghaire. Everybody seemed to enjoy themselves, family members, friends and service users alike. The evening was a great success. At the end of the evening the quizmaster thanked everyone who was responsible for organising the quiz and making it possible. It was a lovely evening and a lovely way to prepare for the Art Exhibition itself. By John Talbot, Anne Fitzpatrick, John Cooney and Gerard O Sullivan, RehabCare Dun Laoghaire A Day at the Races A Night at the Dogs by loose horses and was no longer in contention. My remaining favourite, ridden by top jockey Ruby Walsh, took up the running and won the race. He got my money back. Last year a number of us from RehabCare went to the dogs at Shelbourne Park. The deal included a meal and an opportunity to bet without leaving the table. My first two each way bets came in first and I thought I was on a roll for the rest of the evening. Alas it didn t work out that way. Nevertheless it was a great evening s entertainment. By Jim Mc Loughlin, RehabCare HOPS GUINNESS BREWERY TRIP On Tuesday 1st of August some of us from RehabCare Kilkenny went up to the Guinness Hop Store in Dublin. We all went up on the 8.20 am train. When we got to Dublin we walked up to the Brewery because it was not too far from the station. We got our tickets and went for a cup of tea. When we were finished with our tea some of us went to look around the big gift shop. At 11am our tour began and a man spoke to us about the history of the Brewery and he gave us a map and a souvenir with a ring on it. On the tour we were told how Guinness was made. The main ingredients are hops, barley, yeast and water. They are all combined together to make a perfect pint. As we continued on the tour we saw the Atrium and the Store House, which were originally built in When we had finished our tour of the Brewery we all had to give the ring from the souvenir in at the bar to receive a free drink of Guinness or a mineral of our choice. We had a great day. By Mandy Simpson, RehabCare Kilkenny Nighttime News flashes across the TV screen A roundabout of crisis and change Eyes flickering trying to keep pace With the constant developments And so it goes on A bomb explosion in Beirut A property boom in Scibbereen The eyelids begin to droop The glossy time falls to the floor Its time to put the lights out Slowly I mount the stairs Another day is done. By Jim Mc Loughlin, RehabCare HOPS Portlaoise Fun Week Our long awaited fun week kicked off on the 17th of July with a lovely guided tour of Lockes Distillery in Kilbeggan. Our guide, Mary, provided us with a very interesting and informative tour of the now disused Whisky plant, however the highlight of the tour was the Whisky tasting, but we were very careful not to get too drunk! On Tuesday we were very lucky to have gorgeous weather that was On the 15th June all fun broke loose as every Centre in the North East and Midlands Region put on their runners, broke out the tracksuits, packed the deodorants and warmed up the wellies for the annual Sports Day which was held in Navan. Tensions were high on the day as everyone geared themselves up for the big medal wins!!! But while competition was high it was a great opportunity to meet both old and new friends from around the region and the competition was friendly.mostly!! For the indoor sport fans there was a table quiz, snooker and draughts and for the more outdoorsy among us there were basketball shots, penalty shoot outs, bowls, skittles, welly throwing and a range of running and athletics badly needed, as we went on a very relaxing canal cruise from Monasterevan to Rathangan. The scenery was beautiful and we saw plenty of wildlife too. RehabCare from Tullamore treated us to a brilliant performance of their play on Wednesday morning. All of Portlaoise centre were very impressed with the effort they put into their performance, Northeast and Midlands Sports Day events that would challenge the Olympics! For those who enjoy a bit of pampering there was the opportunity to get a hand massage and nail paint. Dinner was a wonderful feast which was made all the better by watching the staff run about like headless chickens trying to feed the hungry hordes! It was indeed delicious though! The weather was fantastic and all went home tanned, tired and tanked up with tons of phone numbers from new and old friends. Big big big thanks go to all who organized the day. Bernadette and Judith did a fantastic job along with their band of merry helpers. Thanks as well to all the staff from all the centres so well done guys! Wednesday afternoon was fun and games time so we headed up to the Roll n Bowl for a spot of bowling and pool, which was great fun. Thursday was one of the most enjoyable days of the week as we all got the train to Dublin for a visit to the Zoo and do some shopping. We loved the Zoo and saw so many animals, lions, flamingos, seals, wolves and so on. We took loads of pictures, had our lunch out and then spent the rest of our money in the souvenir shop on silly things that cost a fortune! We arrived back at the train station at three o clock and couldn t miss the shoppers who were loaded down with bags they obviously enjoyed themselves! Friday came unfortunately as this signalled the end of our week of fun. We had a beautiful lunch in the Square Bar and the crack was mighty, we all really enjoyed ourselves. In all the week was a great success with everyone really enjoying themselves and having lots and lots of FUN. who made sure that not only did their centre bring home the medals but had a fantastic day in the process. Lastly thanks to all those who took part in the day, without you it would not happen at all!! Looking forward to next year already! By Emer McCarthy, CSM Portlaoise 6 7

5 North East/Midlands South East/Midlands North East/East Atlas Programme Awards Ceremony Longford Mini Marathon On the 16th March, we had an awards ceremony to mark our hard work on the Atlas Programme, Fetac modules and industrial work in RehabCare for the previous year. The Atlas group organised the ceremony and we had the certificates presented by a local Councillor, Tommy McKeigue. Some of the certificates included Preparation for Work (Fetac), Food & Cookery (Fetac), Word Processing (City & Guilds) and also beautiful clocks made by the Woodcraft group. Afterwards we had a big party with food and a D.J. We danced for hours. It was really good fun, we all really enjoyed it and are looking forward to the next party. P.J. Fox sang a lovely song for us all. Jenny Monaghan being presented with her FETAC certificate by Cllr Tommy McKeigue. By Jenny Monaghan & Jonathan Fitzpatrick, This was a great achievement for both and was made possible by the enthusiasm and support from all the staff team at Highfield House. Congratulations and well done to all! Abbeyshrule Vintage Show Last Sunday the 3rd September, my father and I went to Abbeyshrule Vintage show. We arrived there at pm. We got there early to avoid the traffic and when we got there they were just setting up so we timed it perfectly. The cost of entry was 8 euro. The show was very exciting with over 100 tractors, Massey Ferguson 20s/35s and so on and 140 cars, for example the Ford Zephyr, Hillman Imps, Morris Minor/1100 and so on. Tullamore Job Club What service users said about the Job Club in Tullamore? One day during the Job Club, a woman called Caroline Lynch from FAS came to talk to us, she spoke about getting jobs and how to look up information. The Job Club helped me to present myself for interviews. We talked about health and safety, equal opportunities, bullying in the workplace and what to do about it. By Greg Callaghan, Learned a lot about how to cope with stress. This means getting regular exercise and asking for help if I am stressed. I learned to talk to family and friends when I am stressed out. I need to take time out for breaks when I am at work, go for a cycle. I like to do my garden as well. I also looked at my weaknesses and how I can help with this. By Jack Farrell, leisure centre now and I really like it. I work there 11 hours a week. By Fiona Geoghegan, I work in the job club on Thursdays. It really helped me. I m more confident in myself. I have got work experience in a Since I came to the job club, I have covered quite a few things. I now know how to do my C.V. and what I need to 8 Pictured here are Mary Farrell and David Ward who both live in Highfield House and recently completed the Longford Mini Marathon. Today Jack, myself and Kieran went down to the FAS office, where the girl showed us how to look for jobs on the computer. It was easy to do and the girl was very helpful. By Joseph Mullvin, put in it. What is most important, where to send it, and also how to fill in an application form for a job. By Ursula O Brien, Today we covered Health & Safety in the workplace. We pointed out a few fire hazards that might happen in Moor Hall and how to go about fixing the problems and who to report them to. Then we went downtown to the bridge centre looking for fire exits and assembly points. By Kieran Shields, There were side shows for the kids, a dog show and catering tents, trashing and so on. The decades of vehicles ranged from the fifties up to the eighties. When your legs got tired of walking there was a big screen to watch the match. When they finished off the day, they went to the rustic inn for the prize giving. The best car was a 1929 Chevrolet and the best tractor was a 1949 David Brown 990. I hope they do it again next year. By Gerard Mc Loughlin, RehabCare Athlone The Football League RehabCare Northeast along with the FAI have started a new football league. Staff in Cavan came up with the idea. After two coaching days in Cootehill and Dundalk we were put into two divisions. Our team Dundalk Resource Centre were in Division One along with Coes Road, Dundalk, Cavan and Navan A team. Our first game was against Coes Rd and we lost that game. Our next game was away to Cavan and we won that game. We had a new secret weapon of bananas and jaffa cakes because that s what Man Utd. and Armagh use. Our last game was away to Navan and after a great game we lost out in the end. We really enjoyed travelling and playing all the games and we hope that the league keeps going in the future as we make so many friends in other centres. Our team was Oliver, Martin O, Chris, Barry, Jason and me. Paddy was the first aid man. By Domhnall Flynn, Dundalk Resource Centre OUR DAY AT THE VIRGINIA SHOW On Wednesday 25th August, a group of us from our centre went to the Virginia Show. Our bus driver John drove us up. We left our centre at half past ten. The weather was good and we arrived in Virginia in good time. A staff member called Kathleen showed us all around the show. When we arrived the crowds were beginning to come so we went straight into the big hall. There were a lot of competitions. We looked around at all the entries for the different categories. We saw the arts and crafts entries from RehabCare Cavan. They all looked very well. Mary won first prize with her cards. Marguerite won first prize in crocheting. There were a lot of entries, like bread, jam, flower arrangements, craftwork and photographs. When we were finished in there, we went to look at some of the animals hens, geese, sheep, cows, bulls and goats. We enjoyed looking at the animals. We saw two big tractors and Kathleen took photographs of some of the girls standing beside them. When we were finished there we got a few bags of chips and bottles of coke. The sun was shining down on us so we sat down and enjoyed our food. Some of us bought bags of honeycomb and others bought homemade cakes. We spent two hours at the show. Then we headed back to our bus. We got back to our centre at 2 pm.we had a great day. By Evelyn Masterson, Marguerite Kirwan and Mary Tackney, RehabCare Cavan 9

6 North East/Midlands North East/Midlands Take the devil alright The Late John Feeney The Drama Group in Tullamore wrote the plot for our play called Take the devil alright It was about a stranger arriving into the Bridge Centre Tullamore. Nobody knew where she came from, or what she was doing there and things began to change in heaven and hell. We rehearsed once a week for 3 months. Then we had a couple of performances. One was on the launch night of the Art Exhibition and our main performance was in a marquee in O Connor Square, Tullamore on Sunday 16th July. We really enjoyed acting in the play and performing for lots of people in our town. By The Drama Group, Some of the actors of the Drama Play: Greg Callaghan, Kieran Shields + Joe Mulvin John Feeney John Feeney was formerly a Service User of RehabCare in Monaghan and for the past year has been a service user of RehabCare in Dunboyne. He has won a place in the hearts of Service Users and Staff in Dunboyne as, I am sure, he has in the Monaghan Centre too. Despite his disability, John retained his quick wit and had a word for everybody. Sadly, he lost his muchloved Mother only ten weeks before his own untimely death. We extend our deepest sympathy to John s father, Michael and family. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a ainm. John and I have been friends for 13 years. His death has been a great shock to all of us in RehabCare. We were very close and we had a lot in common, we had the same interests in sport and travel. We kept in touch by phone, no matter where we were and we always met at Lourdes. John lost his mother only 6 weeks ago, he was heartbroken and his health deteriorated after that. May he rest in peace. Eamonn Brummitt, RehabCare Monaghan ENCORE PRODUCTIONS IN BONNY SCOTLAND Our Drama Group have been working very hard over the last couple of months on our new show The Judge and the Jury. It is a tale of love, greed, romance and murder. We were all excited when we heard we were going to the Edinburgh Festival to perform. My character is called Busy Lizzy. She is a witness to a murder. She is also very nosy and clever. The Hall, which we were performing in was big. Flyers were stuck on the walls and the hall held over 100. I had butterflies in my tummy. The Hall was full. The lights were dimmed and our show began. The show went really well. The audience were laughing, applauding and whistling. We got a standing ovation. We had lots of photos taken after the show. Everyone was really tired after the show. That night we all decided to go out for a celebration dinner. We all chose to go to McDonalds. It was good grub. a tour bus and to a show. I really enjoyed my trip to Bonny Scotland. By Karen Long, Dundalk Resource Centre Drama Workshops Jason and myself were asked by our drama coordinator if we would be interested in doing drama workshops in our old school one morning a week. We jumped at the chance as we loved our old school and to be able to go back and do workshops with the children would be wonderful. We worked with the brothers, sisters, mums and dads of the children in St. Bridget s School who are autistic. We played drama games. We played a clapping game, counting games and name games. The children and their families enjoyed themselves. One of the little girls was crying when the workshops ended. We met our old teachers and pupils and made new friends. Drama can really help people in lots of different ways. Art Exhibition Phoenix Festival, Tullamore We are doing a Fetac Art module and our tutor is Fin O Hara. We got to experience lots of different art styles, pottery, portraits and landscapes. For the Phoenix Festival, we got large canvas boards and using acrylic paints we could decide how to design our boards, using our fingers, paint scrapers and paint brushes. The Phoenix Festival Art Exhibition was launched on 10th July in the Bridge Centre for a couple of weeks. We invited our parents, family and friends to see our art on display. By Jenny Monahan, Damien O Connor, Joe Mulvin (all artists), The following piece of writing is an example of John s ability with words and the subject was the one closest to his heart. Croke Park a Monaghan man s view of the NFL Final Everyone is decked out for the match, waving the blue and white of Monaghan and talking about the team that SHOULD have been picked. On the way to the pitch by the greasy smell of the hamburger stands, I get some cheese sandwiches for the match and, with my friends, discuss the prospect of Monaghan winning the game. The atmosphere makes me feel good. It s electric with the noise of the crowd and the Patriot Game is played by the Artane Boys Band. huge roar because everyone loves an underdog. If we lose, who s to blame! The Ref., of course! Again! This time there was no need to blame the referee because Monaghan snatched victory from the jaws of defeat when they got a lastsecond goal to give them a one point win. It was great and compensated for Meath s two point victory over Monaghan in the Centenary Cup final in In the victory over Meath, Monaghan won the Division 1 Final. Armagh beat Wexford. The Armagh v Wexford game was the Division 1 Final of the National Football League and Monaghan have won promotion to Division 1 next year. The Armagh v Wexford game was due to be played immediately after Monaghan s victory over Meath, but the start was delayed because of the Monaghan supporters celebrating beating Meath to win Division 2 of the National Football League. Bereavement Sadly we lost two of our service users in Monaghan Centre within 10 weeks of each other, Martina McMeel and Jim Kelly. Both deaths were unexpected. Martina will be missed for her gentle ways, good sense of humour and spelling ability. Jim was a gentle giant and will be remembered for his thoughtfulness and always being ready to lend a helping hand to any heavy work that had to be done. Also he will be remembered for the many scarves he knitted. They will be missed by all. May they rest in peace. RehabCare Dunboyne The rest of our trip was great. We went shopping, sightseeing, went on By Bronagh Boothman, Dundalk Resource Centre Joe Mulvin, Christine Delaney, Eugene Conroy, Fiona Geoghegan The Monaghan team comes out to a Sam Maguire must be next! 10 11

7 North East/Midlands North East/Midlands Tattersalls RehabCare/Simon Community Horticulture Project Doreen McGrath, Susan Morrissey and Michael McGuire are from RehabCare Navan, and these riders were chosen by the Kells R.D.A.I.(Riders Disabled Association Of Ireland) to represent Meath in the S.J.A.I.(Show Jumping Association Of Ireland) Annual Hunter Trails in Tattersalls, co. Dublin. Doreen was the first person to mount her horse Tonto, Susan s horse was called Quest, and Michael s horse was named Apache. The Meath Team were announced and called on to Arena 2, where they demonstrated their horse skills. Each rider name was announced over the loud speaker along with a summary of the rider s ability and a little bit about them, for example how long they had been riding. When the demonstration was over the team lined up in front of the commentary box and were presented with Gold Rosettes from the President of the R.D.A.I. When the team were leaving the arena everyone watching the display gave them a tremendous applause. Their smiles and the pride with which our Larchill Gardens We all went off to Larchill Gardens in groups throughout the summer. It was fabulous and we were really lucky to have fabulous weather. There was a beautiful walled garden that was filled with the most gorgeous flowers, which had a lovely sweet smell. There was also a shell house, and when you walked in, the whole inside wall was covered with shells. The gardens also have a collection of animals such as emus, which come from Australia, long-haired cattle, rare breeds of pigs and ducks and a family of donkeys. Ailish wanted to adopt the baby to keep her donkey company! By Anne Marie Murray, Fiona Brady and Mary Clair, RehabCare Navan 12 A very exciting new project has begun between Dundalk Sheltered Workshop and the Simon Community, Dundalk. Six individuals from both organisations are working together on a Horticulture project which entails transforming a once derelict piece of ground into a recreational area and an organic herb and vegetable garden. The project has been successful on a number of levels by enhancing peoples gardening skills, building new friendships, community integration, enhancing self confidence and each individual gaining a sense of achievement. riders held themselves was a moment to cherish always. Our Navan RehabCare Equestrian Team started riding in October From that time, their ability in their horse-riding skills has shown through, and we were all honoured when they were asked by the R.D.A.I. to represent Meath at the Annual Hunter Trials. All family and friends were so proud of their riders. This event will always be remembered. The weather was good to us on the day and we thoroughly enjoyed the experience. By Catherine Coull, RehabCare Navan Peter s Farewell Friday 28th of August was a happy day but also a sad one. It was the day we got our holidays but also the day a dear friend retired. Peter Collins has been here for as long as I can remember and was a friend to all. Peter kept the place spotless and could always be found working hard somewhere. On Peter s final day we had a party. We all clubbed together and bought him equipment for his favourite hobby, gardening. All staff and service users made sure Peter had a brilliant and great send off. Peter was a friend to everyone and had a great sense of humour. We hope he has a very happy Landscape of Cultures Collage The item we submitted is a group collage that includes two themes landscape and people. The collage is in the shape of a bottle, which is the same shape as our native county Cavan. The collage is made up of hundreds of peoples faces as the population of Cavan is made up of individuals from a variety of different cultures and backgrounds retirement. He will be greatly missed by everyone in Navan. By Eddie Gilligan, RehabCare Navan Collage developed by: The Arts and Crafts Class in RehabCare Cavan John Brady, Rose Brady, Maura McKiernan, Anthony McPartland, Mary Tackney, Bridgie Carolin, Wendy Clarke, Damien McManus, Evelyn Masterson, William Reilly, Gary Caffrey and Kevin Shannon. The Sheltered Workshop Dundalk Newsletter. Nine service users from the Sheltered Workshop in Dundalk took on the responsibility of publishing a monthly newsletter for the centre. All the articles are decided upon and written by the group. The group receive very little help from staff when working on the newsletter. There is great excitement around the centre when the newsletter is published, as everyone is interested to see what articles are in it. We hope they continue their good work. Their names are Michael Smith, Joe Smith, Olivia Coburn, Una McNamee, Joe Dorian, John Megan, Jimmy Hanlon, Colette Martin and Niall Coleman. Horticulture Following a lot of hard working and learning as we went along, five service users in Navan successfully completed their FETAC foundation level course in Horticulture. We spent 2 years working on it, firstly doing our vegetable garden and secondly doing our flower garden. We really enjoyed it and are still working on keeping our flowerbed weed free, a never ending task! I wish to congratulate Eddie, Nicky, Aisling, Josie and Mary. You all deserve it. By Louise Tinne, RehabCare Navan Sligo visits Cavan centre I would like to take this opportunity to say when we recently had a visit from Sligo RehabCare, that we all had a great day. We had a table quiz, which was great fun. Cavan won by one point. The Sligo people were lovely and we hope they enjoyed the visit. Marguerite Kirwin, Service User, RehabCare Cavan 13

8 West/North South East/East West West/North West Westlife I am a big Westlife fan and have been to nearly all of their Irish concerts. The last concert I went to was on 12th April in Dublin. My Mother brought me there. Mark is my favourite member of the band. I have collected all their CDs and am a member of the Westlife fan club. I really enjoyed their last concert and am looking forward to their next Irish concert. By Rachel Gielty, RehabCare Castlebar Taking the Test!! One of my goals as part of Discovery is to learn to drive. The centre staff and my mother met and agreed to let me try. The first step is to pass the test to get a driving licence. Lorraine spoke to the Adult Education Centre about me getting lessons. Liz a tutor was allocated to me and I have been going to the Education centre for 1 hour every Tuesday to practise. I took a test in April but failed by a couple of points. So I am now back practising. So watch this space for when I complete this step and move on to step 2! By John Higgins, RehabCare Castlebar My BIG Discovery In 2001 when I started working with the new RehabCare Centre Staff and we started the Discovery process I told the Supervisor (then Finola) that I wanted to find my mother. After being born in Tuam, Galway I was brought up by the nuns in Chapelizod in Dublin from when I was very young (1947). When I was old enough I worked in the laundry and the nursery helping with the babies. In 1965 I moved back to the West coast and worked in the Sacred Heart Hospital in the laundry. I stayed there for nine years before going to work in the McBride Home where I did general work (in other words anything they asked me to do!). I left the McBride Home to go to work in the Railway Hotel in Westport in Whilst I was there I was told that a woman had come looking for me but I had missed her. Whoever it was, she never returned. It was this event that made me think that it may have been my mother and I decided to try to find her. In 1983 I left the Railway Hotel and had no job but did go to Lourdes and prayed that I would find my mother. During all this time I was living in Westport and trying to find my mother, going to places in Galway and Dublin. In 1986 I started in Rehab, working in the kitchen. In 2001 when RehabCare started to work with the long term Service Users, I came out of the kitchen which I didn t really enjoy and started to work in the workshop. It was at this time that the Supervisor made the first contact with first, Barnardos and then, the Western Health Board. The Health Board have someone who deals with finding parents or children who have lost contact when the child is young or was adopted. Josephine, the first Social Worker and her located my mother s home place but then changed job. This was when Catherine took over her work with me. Finola had also left RehabCare at this stage and Lorraine our manager took over her work on helping me. Early this year Catherine brought me the sad news that my Mother had moved to Scotland and had died a number of years ago. I was very sad and went to Knock to pray for her. A month later I heard that I had a brother and would I like to meet him. Did I! I met my brother for the first time on March 13th this year. He is two years younger than me and had hurt his foot many years ago in a farm accident. An aunt and uncle had raised him as my mother had left to go and live in Scotland when he was about ten or eleven. He told me about a lot of other cousins and second cousins we had as well. Catherine was in contact with them and on April 28th I went out to Belmullet to meet first, my brother (who I get on really well with) and then my cousins. The cousins also told me that there was another relative who lived in Scotland and knew my mother well and that she might know where my mother was buried. So although this is the end of my news article it is nowhere near the end of my story. I hope to visit my mothers grave with Lorraine in the future and also my cousins in Belmullet have asked me to spend time up there (which I may once I get to know them better). Just think, this time last year I had no family that I knew about, and this year I have loads! By Judy Lynskey, RehabCare Castlebar The Special Olympics RehabCare Castlerea welcomes home its Gold medallists A Winning Streak Some of the memories of the RehabCare Sligo athletes who took on the nation at the recent Special Olympics Games in Belfast: Ruth Cleary gold medal in golf. I loved the five days we were there. We stayed at the University College in Stranmillis and a lot of coaches were there with us. The evening we arrived we all went to the Odyssey Arena for the Opening Ceremony. Brian Kennedy sang on stage and Gerry Kelly, Kathryn Thomas and Ian Dempsey were there as well. My family came to see me at the golf tournament and they were delighted when I won my medal. Gerard McCormack three gold medals in table tennis. My fondest memory is when I received my three golds on the podium. I enjoyed competing against other players, being in Belfast and participating in the Games. I liked wearing the gear and seeing different places. Now I would love to be picked and win a gold at the World Games in China next year. I was at the Special Olympics in Belfast from 21st to the 25th June. I was playing soccer in it. We played Leinster, Munster and Ulster. We won all of our matches and we won gold medals. We felt very proud of ourselves. We stayed in Strandmillis College. We had our own bedrooms and we had our breakfast in the canteen. We had to be ready for the bus at 8am. The bus brought us to the football pitch and we went back to the college at around 5pm for dinner. We went to the disco every night, where we were given small tubs of ice-cream, popcorn and crisps. We all went back to the college at around 10 pm. The presentation of the medals was on Sunday morning after we played our Thomas Connolly one gold and one bronze medal in table tennis. On the first day I felt a bit nervous playing a game of singles. After that I knew what to do. I met different people and we talked about our favourite sports. The food was excellent and the staff were very nice. One of the coaches told me I hope you win the gold in table tennis and then I won the double with Gerry. I hope to be picked for China. Mary Kate Dolan one gold and one silver medal in table tennis. I remember when I was playing against a girl from Belfast in the singles and it was good fun. I also played in the last game. Afterwards we got on the bus and headed home, it was a long way from Belfast to Roscommon. Our families were waiting for us when we arrived and we drove around Roscommon town. There was a car driving behind the bus and the driver was beeping the horn. We had our photograph taken in Belfast and Roscommon. Our picture was in the Roscommon Herald on 27th June. The team stayed home on Monday and when we arrived at RehabCare on Tuesday morning there was a banner outside saying Congratulations and Welcome Home. We had a party in the centre in the afternoon. By TG, RehabCare Castlerea mixed doubles with Gerry. I enjoyed the meals we had and the trip to Belfast with the rest of the Team Connaught. We saw the Olympic torch being carried at the Opening Ceremony. That was very exciting. Kenny Fleming ribbon in golf. My favourite thing about being in Belfast was meeting different people and mixing with my Connaught teammates. I think the golf tournament was so fun and I did my best. Rory Callaghy is my coach and we had practiced very hard before the event. At the end I finished in seventh place and I got a ribbon but I look forward to doing even better at the next Games

9 West/North West West/North West Roundstone My mum took me to Roundstone for three days and two nights. We stayed in a lovely B&B just outside the town, which was within walking distance. We ate out at night in restaurants and the food was lovely. The scenery of the mountains in Roundstone was very nice. It was so quiet in Roundstone. The beaches were nice and we swam in the beach in Roundstone. We really enjoyed the time in Roundstone it was a good few days. By Aine O Grady, Galway Resource Centre A Cat in the House Black and white she was, We loved her just because, She was a nice pretty cat, Who sat upon the mat. I remember her as a puss, All around her we did fuss. She purred like a real cat. There was nothing strange in that. When all of us were out, Without a nod or a shout. Up on the table she d go. I wonder was it for show. She never left the house, Not even to catch a mouse. Her eyes were a blackish green, In the garden she was seen. Pussy was her name It was not one of fame. For an ordinary cat was she, Who had Kitty Kat for her tea. She liked a saucer of milk It was for her a drink. When the sun came out too strong For the milk she would long. By Ailish Higgins, Galway Resource Centre Lifford Community Dance We had a community dance in McBrides Castlefinn for RehabCare on the 21st April. A great local band Gary Gamble was the entertainment. He played great dancing music. Bernadette another service user got up and sang a song. She was very good! We also had an auction of an Irish football shirt that was signed by all the Irish team. Eddie our bus driver did the auction. He was a great man for the job. We had a few drinks and everyone had a brilliant night. By Michael McElhinney, RehabCare Lifford What outreach means to me I find Outreach very enjoyable. The company is great. Simon is my Outreach Facilitator and he is very friendly. We went to the ISPCA open day on 23rd July. We saw various animals and we ate out afterwards. On another occasion we went to the picnic day in Cuisle. It was raining and I got soaked, but there was live music and plenty of fun. On 6th August, Simon brought me to the Rosfest in Roscommon and we did a treasure hunt through Roscommon town with Francis and Anne. Before Outreach started I was sitting at home in the evenings and weekends doing nothing. We go swimming on Tuesdays, Tommy and Oliver come too. The bowling on Thursdays is very good Ann Brennan and myself are very good at it. I was in Strandhill in Sligo with Thomas and Eileen last Tuesday. I was last in Strandhill with my father R.I.P. and brother Padraig and sister Finola on 22nd August Last Tuesday s trip brought back lots of fond memories. Thomas, Eileen and I got something nice to eat in Sligo. It was an enjoyable day. Without Outreach I would be bored as I would have nothing to look forward to and probably be going to bed early in the evenings By M. O C, RehabCare Castlerea Our Presentation to Bóthar This year in the Resource Centre and Sheltered Workshop we got together and collected money which we wanted to give to a charity. We looked at how different charities worked and decided to pick Bóthar. Why Bóthar? It is a third world development agency, which provides poor families with the means to help themselves. It does this by giving the family a farm animal like a cow, or a dairy goat, or rabbits instead of money. They are taught to look after the animals properly and have the support of vets to help them if the animals are sick. This allows the family to provide for themselves by producing milk, meat or eggs. They can then sell food that they do not use, giving the family their own money and also make them feel good about themselves. Bóthar s National Fundraising Project Office is based in Tubbercurry, Sligo and we contacted them to say we Our big day out This year we had our big day out on the 3rd August. First we went to an animal farm outside of Athlone called Glendeer. At the animal farm we saw lots of different animals like goats, ponies, Jersey cows, pups, kittens, and lots of different kinds of birds. On the way out we saw reindeer. We had a picnic there were lots of sandwiches, biscuits, drinks, fruit and crisps. Next we drove to the Clonmacnoise West Offaly Bog Train Tour. We all got on the train and it headed out to the bog. A woman gave us a talk about the bog. Halfway round the bog the train stopped and we were given a demonstration of traditional turf wished to donate some money. Their Fundraising Projects Director Pat McCarrick offered to come and accept the cheque on behalf of Bóthar and speak to us about Bóthar. We all gathered to present our cheque and listen to Pat speak. He spoke to us about how Bóthar had started with an idea of sending over an in-calf heifer to provide a family with milk and gift another family with an offspring similar to their own. The organisation has grown in size and now sends out rabbits, dairy goats, hens, pigs, hives of honey bees to name but a few, to help people to help themselves. We got to see a video of how a family s life has changed since they received their dairy cow, building their own house and having money to educate and care for the health of their family. We were delighted to be able to see how our money will be spent to help benefit others in need. cutting with a Slain a few of us tried it and it was good fun. The train brought us back to the start where there was a craft shop and a place where you could get tea or coffee. Some of us bought souvenirs. After that we headed to Derryglad Folk Museum where we saw loads of old tools, items for the kitchen, old money, gramophones and other things from the past. It was very interesting. It was now about 6 o clock and we had a meal booked in Cox s of Dromod. It was fabulous a great end to a perfect day. By Thomas, John and Patrick, RehabCare Ballinamore We presented Pat with a cheque for Bóthar worth With this money we were able to send 1 dairy goat Three rabbits And a flock of 50 baby chicks, to help families to help themselves As told by Claire McLoughlin and John O Kelly, RehabCare Sligo My Dream Come True It has always been my goal to see Westlife in concert and when the opportunity came up I grabbed it!! We left at 3.00pm to go and see Westlife in Belfast. Ann, Josephine and Adrian my friends came with me. Dawn and Anne came too. When we got there I thought that the Odyssey Arena was big. We got pictures taken outside the Odyssey. When we arrived inside the Odyssey I was getting excited. We then got something to eat. During our meal we laughed a lot. I couldn t wait until Westlife come on. There were other artists on before Westlife but I just wanted to hear Westlife. I was getting very excited. I went to the Westlife shop with Dawn and bought a t-shirt, a cup, posters, and a scarf! When Westlife came on stage everybody screamed. I was so excited. They played for about two hours. They were very good. The show was very colourful. There was a very good atmosphere. There was a huge crowd when we were leaving. It was unbelievable. The next morning in the centre, my friends were asking how it went - I said that it was a Dream Come True. By Gertie Brown, RehabCare Lifford 16 17

10 South West/North East/East West South/Midwest Presentation Fun Day at Lifford We had our Presentation Day on the 16th June. We had a lot of work to do before the day getting the centre ready. We received a certificate for the programmes we had taken part in throughout the year. Barry Sweeney and Kevin Clancy attended our special day. Our new manager Loretto was introduced to everybody. We had entertainment by Dominic Kirwan and Shaun Cuddy and D.J Vision. We danced the day away with our friends and family. By John-Joe Loftus, RehabCare Lifford Our Holidays in Galway 2006 We went on holidays on Tuesday 30th May leaving Ballinamore at 11 am. We stopped at the West Wing Restaurant in Tuam and had our lunch, then continued on to Galway and made our way to the Quality Hotel Oranmore. It was a lovely hotel with leisure centre; gym, steam room and Jacuzzi. We checked in and went up to our rooms on the 4th floor and we unpacked and relaxed for an hour. Five people went bowling in the centre beside the hotel and the others went with Damien to check out the locality and test the beer. When we came back we went to the leisure centre and had a swim, used the steam room and relaxed in the Jacuzzi. We went back to our rooms and got dressed up and had dinner at 8pm in the hotel the food was very good. Then we had few drinks in the bar and went to bed. Wednesday morning we got up and had a great breakfast and headed for a tour of Connemara. We visited Lenane, and saw the pub that was in the film The Field. We did some sightseeing and shopping. Ann bought a new jacket and dumped her old one. Then we went to Kylemore Abbey and the manager Isobel allowed us admission free of charge. The gardens were beautiful and the buildings around the abbey all old style. Ann Keane took a nap in the Bottys Bed. We viewed the abbey, and also visited the restored chapel beside the abbey, which was beautiful. After we drove through Letterfrack and on too Clifden; it was a very hot day so we went for a drink and we decided to have our dinner in Clifden in a restaurant called Off The Square. We had a lovely meal. It was about 8.30 pm when we left Clifden and we got back to the hotel about 10 pm. Although it was a long day, we decided to go to a pub in Oranmore where there was Irish music and dancing it was very good. We walked back to the hotel, got our keys and went to bed tired but happy. On Thursday we got up, had breakfast and drove out to Salthill. Again it was a lovely day and we had to wear sun protection. We walked along the promenade and could see the Aran Islands in the distance. We went to the National Aquarium where we saw all types of different fish, sharks, star fish, sea bass, sea horses, salmon and eels to name a few. We even got a chance to hold a starfish. It was a great experience and a place we would visit again. Afterwards we had tea and buns in the coffee shop beside the aquarium. All at Ballinamore Resource Centre Samhlaíocht Parade The Samhlaoícht Easter parade was held in Tralee on Saturday the 15th April The parade started at 2.00 pm from Siamsa Tire, went up passed the Dominican Church, the Garda Barracks, around by Shaw s, down by Denny street, and back to Siamsa to finish. We then returned to the centre in Blennerville. RehabCare Blennerville took part in the parade along with a lot of other groups. The scouts, who use our centre, were there. They had blue and white umbrellas and were dressed in blue and white they went as water fountains. As this was our first time doing the parade, we got help from Marian and Jerry to build the pot for the stew and also make costumes for the carrots, potatoes, cabbages, sunflowers, St. Patrick and lots more. Our group was called Clear as Crystal and we came up with the idea of going as a pot of Irish stew because the parade was all about Roots. We had great fun getting ready for the parade. Marie Keating Foundation On Tuesday the 28th February we had a Cancer Awareness Day and the Marie Keating Foundation van came to our Blennerville centre. Ann Walsh Ryan gave a talk about Cancer to two different groups. There was a woman s group and a men s group and there were 22 people altogether who listened to the talks. Ann Walsh Ryan spoke about different forms of cancer like breast cancer, bowel cancer, lung cancer, skin cancer and prostate cancer. She explained how Photographed are: Joe Dowdall, Catherine O Dell, Catherine Casey, Philomena O Donoghue, Anne Lane, Tommy Cantillon, Mary Sugrue, Geraldine Dineen, Margaret Crowley, Mary Goodall, Isabelle Bailey, Katie Gaffey Marian and Jerry went with us up to the fabric centre to buy materials for the costumes. We all helped to cut out, paste, paint, decorate and dye the different costumes. We also painted 4 umbrellas, 2 green for the cabbages and 2 orange for the carrots, and stuck on green leaves and ivy at the top. We had a lot of fun going to town to buy different things and when we were ready Jerry painted our faces. We got a taxi from the centre and started from Siamsa. We gave out hug a to check for lumps in our own body, to protect our skin from the sun by using a sun block and to give up smoking. She said it was important to have regular checkups and to be aware of our body and our health. The talk was very interesting and we learned a lot. We got a lot of information from brochures that she gave out. We took photographs outside the Marie Keating Foundation van and some of us checked out the inside of the van as well. We enjoyed our day and we hope that they will come back to visit us again another time. bug bears and the leprechaun (Mary Goodall) gave out chocolate coins. We saw everyone and everyone saw us. It was great fun and we would love to do it all again. We would like to thank Samhlaíocht for organising it and for giving us a great day out. Afterwards we all came back out to Blennerville, cleaned off all the face paint and took off the costumes and wigs, and then went to the Station House for a meal. Photographed above are: Georgina Barrett, Joe Dowdall, Tommy Cantillon, Philomena O Donoghue, Mary Sugrue, Anne Lane, Sharon Daly, Bernice Casey, Pauline Brown, Jim Kelly, Catherine Casey, Adrian Smith, Catherine O Dell, Irene Kavanagh, Jane O Donoghue, Ann Walsh Ryan 18 19

11 South/Midwest East/East Creative South East/East Writing Highlights of our Summer On the 19th July 2006 a group from RehabCare resource centre Nenagh went on a day trip to Dublin. We went to Thurles by bus and caught the 8.10 am train to Dublin. When we arrived at Euston station Dublin we got the no.19 bus to Dáil Eireann. Michael Lowry TD met us at the Dáil where he gave us a tour of the building. He showed us the room where the Dáil meet and pictures of the past and present Taoiseach. Our group was treated to tea and snacks in the Dáil and before returning home on the 3.30pm train we had a meal in Supermacs in Euston station. We had a great day out and learned a lot from the visit. However, the highlight of our summer was our summer holiday in Killarney. Service users and staff departed for their annual holiday to Killarney on Monday 31st July 2006 for five days. We had a great time and an action packed week. We went to Muckross House and visitors centre, had a ride on the jaunting cars, went shopping to Tralee and saw three great shows. Here are some of the activities of our week. On Tuesday 1st August, we departed for Kenmare to catch the 1.15 pm sailing of the Seafari Ireland s premier eco-nature, history and seal watching cruise. This is a friendly family-run river cruise on board a fully equipped passenger vessel. The friendly captain and guide gave us lots of information throughout our tour as we cruised around the many islands between the Beara and Iveragh Mountain peninsula. We saw spectacular mountains, forests and castles. We also observed from close up Ireland s largest and most spectacular sea colony where 300 or more seals make their home in the paradise that is the Kerunare River. We also had tea and coffee on board with a lot of rum, if required. At the end of the cruise the captain s son Patrick sang a song and told a joke for everyone on board. At 8.30 pm on the same evening we went to the Killarney Avenue Hotel to see the Liam O Connor show and boy was it good. Liam is a well-known accordion player and musician and his show provided us with a great night s entertainment. Liam s wife Lisa did all the singing for the show and four talented Irish dancers provided great visual and choreographic effects. Liam jumped from the stage and personally entertained some of our group to some of his great traditional Irish tunes, to their great delight. The Liam O Connor show was one of the highlights of our holiday in Killarney. On Wednesday 2nd August, we went to Muckross House and gardens. It was lovely and when we got there we went on the jaunting cars. The Jarvey told us about the history of the house, the biggest trout ever caught in the lake, and the five hundred year old tree. We then went for a walk around the Visitor s Centre and had a look around the shop to buy some presents to take home. After that we had lovely soup and sandwiches in the restaurant. We then got back on the bus and went back to the house to have a rest before our night out in the Gleneagle Hotel for the showband s show. By: Michael Kennedy and Jimmy Mitchell, RehabCare Nenagh On the 3rd August we went shopping to Tralee shopping centre. I had a great time walking around all the shops. I bought a tracksuit and two tops in Evans. I went upstairs to the restaurant to have a rest and a cup of tea after all the shopping. I am looking forward going back to Killarney next year. By: Breda Ryan, RehabCare Nenagh On Thursday 3rd August we went to a show called Dance on the Moon in the Great Southern Hotel in Killarney. When we got there we all had a drink in the reception area while we waited for the doors to open. The show started at 8.30 pm. It was a story done through Irish dancing the dancers were very good and I really enjoyed the show. It was one of the highlights of my holiday in Killarney. By: John Keane, RehabCare Nenagh Service users and staff would like to congratulate Karen Flanagan, Ann O Meara and Gerard Keown on their new employment. Competition Winners For our September Competition, we asked you to send us a story or poem about a personal experience, journey or holiday. We had an overwhelming response and some great entries, so we ve decided to choose both a winning story and a winning poem. The winning poem called Purple in Sunlight is by Mark Long from HOPS. The winning story called The Lost Brother is by Marie Grimes from Dundalk Resource Centre. Well done to you both! The Lost Brother Mammy died 10 years ago. I hadn t seen my brother Paddy since then. I missed him and really wanted to see him. I remembered his wife had a relative in the town. I knew the street but not the number. Me and the girls went up one night we knocked on every door in the street until we finally found Paddy s wife s brother! At last after 10 years I had my brother s phone number. I made contact and went to visit him in Liverpool. He met me at the airport and I cried. That was 1 year ago. Now we talk every Wednesday night! Last Friday I was getting ready for a party. There was a knock at the door. It was Paddy, all the way from Liverpool. I couldn t believe it! Family is so important. You just have to keep in touch. By Marie Grimes Purple in sunlight Purple, you enter through my eyes and from there hit the back of my head with a dum-dum bullet-like explosion of micro-emotional charge, like a nuclear fission chain reaction of sensation randomly crashing into other sensation. Such beauty first thing in the morning to wake me out of stupor and into daze. From darkness to this, what is this you do to me? that no other colour can. Kings knew this and peasants were bamboozled with the contrast to their dreary brown rags. By Mark Long Summer 2006 Contest Our summer 2006 contest asked for artwork submissions on themes such as Animals, Landscape, or People. The winning entry pictured here is by Amanda Parker from RehabCare, Monaghan. Well done Amanda! Christmas Competition We're looking for budding designers to take part in the Christmas competition for the next edition. Send us in your creative Christmas ideas for ornaments, wreaths, calendars, cards e-cards etc. Remember, you can send in a photo of your item rather than the item itself

12 South NRAC East/East South Information East/East Bulletin The NRAC National Committee has been involved in a number of new developments over the summer months. In June we attended and presented at a conference in Belfast called Nothing about us without us. We also completed our first draft of the Guidelines on Bullying for Date for your diary This year we are taking a new approach to our AGM We are combining a Service User and Staff workshop together based on the theme Advocacy. It will run over days on the 15th & 16th November. Below are some more details on all of our activities. Nothing about us without us Conference in Belfast in June This conference was the first all-ireland self-advocacy conference for selfadvocates and supporters. Guest speakers at the conference included Dr John O Brien from Inclusion Associates, Karen Spencer and Ian Davis from People First England. The conference had workshops about self-advocacy and rights in the areas of home, independence, education, work, health and relationships. Self-Advocacy is about standing up for your rights. NRAC decided to give a presentation in a workshop on our Advocacy Group. Five NRAC National Committee members attended and gave a fantastic presentation to a group of 20 people and then had a questions and answers session. This was the first time NRAC presented externally, so it was a new experience. Well done to all members including Jimmy Dooner, Martin Flanagan, Margaret Norris, Simon Buggy and Michael O Brien! Service Users in July and we then received a highly commended award from the Rehab Council Innovation Awards 2006 for the Bullying Guidelines. We also presented in Trinity College on the topic of bullying to a group of Danish visitors in September. Bullying Guidelines for Service Users within RehabCare Following on from our Bullying Seminar in February 2006 when we received valuable information from you, the NRAC National Committee has been working on new Bullying Guidelines. The Committee allocated two hours of each monthly meeting researching policies and building on the information that you all provided. The Guidelines have been completed and we will launch them at our AGM in November. All information will be sent out to your centre closer to the date. Rehab Council Innovation Awards 2006 We were very pleased to hear the great news that NRAC received a highly commended award for our Guidelines on Bullying from the Rehab Council Innovation Awards. The awards ceremony took place in October and all members of the National Committee attended this function and the Seminar the following day. Regional Meetings All meetings have been very successful within the regions and are completed. This is a great opportunity for Service Users to meet and discuss future projects and link in directly with their Regional Manager. Trinity College Presentation Dr Jean Lynch of Trinity College contacted the National Development Officer to ask if NRAC would present at a meeting in Trinity on Bullying. The National Committee agreed and two members attended the meeting. Well done to Jimmy Dooner NRAC National Chairperson and Michael O Brien NRAC National Committee Member. NRAC COMMITTEE LIFFORD We had our weekly meeting just before the summer break. We invited Maria Lynch along to that meeting. We discussed the financial situation and the changes that are going to take place in the future. We had a very successful meeting. We adjourned for lunch and we had a lovely lunch in the Old Court House in Lifford. After lunch we came back to the centre. We got Maria to do a draw for us, as we had done a sponsored walk and silence the previous day. We got the prizes sponsored by Boots chemist in Strabane for which we would like to thank them. We would also like to thank the management and staff of the centre for their help in organising this event. On the 21st of August we elected our new NRAC Committee. Three members of the last committee stepped down and there are now three new members. The election was very well organised. Eleven went forward for seven places. After the election we sat down and elected new officers to the committee. We would also like to thank the staff of the Lifford centre for their help with the election. The NRAC Committee, RehabCare Lifford Person Centred Thinking: The Doughnut Principle Recently, I was fortunate enough to be invited by the South & East Belfast Trust to attend some training delivered by Julie Allen, Helen Sanderson Associates, and Bronagh Hillen, South & East Belfast Trust, on Person Centred Thinking. Here I was introduced to the Doughnut Principle as described by management guru Charles Handy. In Handy s Doughnut the centre, far from being empty, is filled in. If you draw it you will see something like a fried egg a small solid centre surrounded by a white space bounded by a roughly circled line. I have to say I have previously been sceptical of gurus. In the Doughnut management theory the solid middle represents the essential elements of the job, things that have to be done no matter what. But the responsibilities don t end there. The white space is the opportunity for initiative and creativity, for going beyond, for adding extra value, for getting more out of less. There is, however, a boundary, an official limit to discretion, and the line beyond which one should not go. Person Centred Thinking, developed by Michael Smull and Helen Sanderson, developed this idea for staff that have a support role for people with a disability. Increasingly staff are asked to simultaneously support choice, build relationships and assure health and safety. Naturals in this role will easily get the balance right. However many others can get caught up with either the first or last message. As was stated on the day happy and dead is not an option but equally neither is safe and miserable. What is important is that this balance is defined with each individual that we support. The Doughnut principle as adapted by Michael Smull for supporting people with disabilities suggests that there are three areas of responsibility that can be defined with each person we support. The centre of the doughnut is the core responsibilities, those things that we need staff to do without fail. These core responsibilities should be a mix of health and safety issues and those things that are important to the person. The middle circle is the area where we should encourage and expect (and support) staff to use their judgment and creativity. These are areas where staff are expected to try new ideas and not be held to blame if the ideas do not work out. Outside of the doughnut are those areas that are not our responsibility, because they are personal or to put it another way none of our business. It was explained that the boundary between core responsibilities and areas where people can use their judgement should be sharp and clear. If someone requires a particular medical intervention or if a particular routine is important to a person this is not an issue of judgement or creativity but Not Our Paid Responsibility (The Domain of friends) Use Judgement/Creativity Core Responsibility Michael W. Smull (From Charles Handy) one in which we need to follow the person s instructions. On the outer boundary, the distinction between judgement and none of our business is deliberately kept blurred. For example; how someone dresses might be none of our business in the day to day, but could fall into the area of use judgement and creativity when they wish to get into a night club. Management gurus like Charles Handy have never been essential reading material for me. But in future I will try not to be so blinkered and be open to gaining knowledge from other organisational learning. However another leading thinker of the 21st century Homer J. Simpson had already highlighted the potential benefits of doughnuts when stating Doughnuts: is there nothing that they cannot do? Mmmm doughnuts. By Kevin Barnes, Programmes Manager RehabCare 22 23

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