No one should be ALONE this Christmas

NEWS RELEASE

 

Tuesday 21st November, 2017: Vincent Browne launched ALONE's Christmas Campaign "No one should be ALONE this Christmas" in the Westin Dublin today. ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age home, is asking memebers of the public to offer friendship and support to those living alone this Christmas. Pictured were Donald Smith, Annette Egan who avail of Alone services with Vincent Browne and Sean Moynihan CEO of Alone.
Picture Jason Clarke

 

Vincent Browne asks public to reach out to thousands of older people spending Christmas alone

 

Dublin, 21st November 2017 ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, today launched their Christmas campaign which; asks individuals to support the work of ALONE by volunteering and donating, and for older people experiencing isolation and loneliness to get in touch with ALONE to avail of one of it’s services. At the launch of the campaign former broadcaster Vincent Browne urged members of the public to offer friendship and support to those living alone.

 

Vincent Browne commented at the launch, “I have been an admirer of the work of ALONE for many years and I fully support their vision of a society where older people are included as valued and empowered members of the community. The need for supportive housing, befriending and other services for older people has grown exponentially in recent years and, with the number of over 65s set to increase dramatically in the next couple of decades, it’s only going to get worse if we don’t act fast!”

 

He continued, “This campaign is asking older people to pick up the phone and get in touch with ALONE, it’s asking families to talk to the older people in their lives about their needs and it’s asking people who want to help to become an ALONE Befriending volunteer. ALONE’s campaign is offering us the chance to connect with older people, provide them with the supports they need, and build a sense of community.”

 

ALONE provides direct, frontline services to people aged 60 years and over, through coordination of supports, volunteer activation, housing with support and application and sharing of knowledge and technology. Its Befriending Service provided friendship to over 500 older people who were socially isolated or lonely in 2016. ALONE’s Housing with Support provides tenancies and on-site support in community-centric areas, giving older people alternatives in their choice of where and how to age. It also supports older people by offering knowledge, training and technology to ensure quality services, common practices and independent living.

 

Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “As an organisation that works with older people, we see firsthand the effects of loneliness. Last year’s census revealed that 27% of over 65s in private housing, live alone[i] and 1 in 10 older people suffer from chronic loneliness which can lead depression, and is a predictor for dementia, cardiovascular disease and decreased immune system responsivity.”

 

He continued, “We want older people to know that they have a right to be supported, to receive the support they need and to live in a place of their own choosing. We are asking members of the public to support ALONE by donating their time to older people experiencing loneliness, making a donation to support our services or referring an older person who might use our services. We will all be old one day and deserve to have supports and services in place to help us age well at home.”

 

At Christmas, ALONE’s activities include; the organisation of 500 volunteers who visit older people each week, a Christmas dinner dance for older people and volunteers, the delivery of hundreds of Christmas hampers to older people in need and a special Christmas Day dinner delivery for a number of older people. ALONEs services mean so much to the older people we work with, in their words; “ALONE and my volunteer have made such a difference in my life. I am not alone at Christmas, my birthday or throughout the year. I have people to celebrate with me. I feel like I’m part of the community.”

 

 

For those who have concerns about their own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of an older person in their community, ALONE can be contacted on (01) 679 1032. To make a donation and help aid ALONE’s work this Christmastime visit www.alone.ie

 

ENDS

 

About ALONE

2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing.  ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

 

For more information contact:

Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153

Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

 

[i]2016 Census

ALONE wins FreedomTech Award

ALONE accepting FreedomTech Award

 

PRESS RELEASE

The award is for new technology assisting older people to age at home

 

Dublin, 16th November 2017   ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has been awarded the first ever FreedomTech Award at a conference on assistive technology which took place at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin, today. The FreedomTech Assembly was run by Enable Ireland and the Disability Federation of Ireland (DFI) along with support from Maynooth University and Microsoft.

 

The FreedomTech award was presented to ALONE for the new integrated technology platform it has developed to support older people to age at home. The ALONE platform, which was developed in partnership with NetwellCASALA, is operated through mobile apps and home sensors. The apps ask daily questions about health and wellbeing, with answers recorded on a tablet by the older person, and separately by a visiting neighbour, carer or family member. The combined answers form a unique pattern, and a change from this can trigger an intervention. Home sensors can detect if the resident has got up today, has entered the toilet or kitchen, and can trigger an intervention eg. raise an alarm that they may have fallen or are too unwell to get up.

 

Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, accepted the award on behalf of ALONE, “I would like to thank our partners Netwell Casala, the Social Innovation Fund and Google. I would also like to thank all of our staff who have worked very hard on this project over the past 4 years. ALONE has been delivering support services to older people for 40 years and this new integrated technology platform will allow us to continue supporting older people well into the future.”

 

He continued, “Our platform will improve the wellbeing of older people, give peace of mind to their families, carers and volunteer support network and equip existing community supports to enable them to age at home. It is also transferable and scalable, and it is our hope that it can be used to support other sectors throughout Ireland and Europe.”

 

He concluded, “This FreedomTech award shows how an organisation can bring both change and communities together. Technology is enabling us to move away from traditional models of care towards alternative models that harness community resources and give older people, and other people using the techology, more power and control to age at home.”

 

ENDS

 

About ALONE

2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing.  ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

 

 

For more information contact:

Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153

Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

 

Baz launches ALONE & An Post’s ‘Do One Thing’ Christmas Campaign

Repro Free: Thursday 16th November 2017. Baz launches ALONE & An Post’s ‘Do One Thing This Christmas’ Campaign Order your company’s Christmas cards with An Post and support ALONE in their vital work. This Christmas, ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has partnered with An Post for its ‘Do one thing’ campaign. The campaign which launches next week allows companies to make a donation to ALONE while ordering high-quality Christmas cards which can be personalised with a logo or personal message inside. Pictured at the launch of the campaign in the GPO, O’Connell Street, Dublin 1, were: Michael McCarthy, ALONE service user with Baz Ashmawy and Sheila Collins, ALONE service user. Picture Jason Clarke
Pictured at the launch of the campaign in the GPO were Michael & Sheila from ALONE with Baz Ashmawy. Picture: Jason Clarke.

Make Christmas less lonely by sending a card to an older person living alone

16th November 2017 This Christmas, ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has partnered with An Post for its ‘Do One Thing’ campaign. Baz Ashmawy launched the campaign which encourages members of the public to reach out to older people experiencing loneliness by sending them a personalised An Post card.

Speaking at the launch, Baz said, “We are asking people to do one thing this Christmas – send a lovely Christmas card to an older person! For just €5 you can go online, order a card and write a nice message to an older person linked in with ALONE. An Post will then print and post the card. Every card sent will raise money for ALONE, as well as making a huge difference to that older person’s Christmas.”

€3.20 from every card sold will go directly to ALONE’s services. The organisation provides friendship, support, social events, and housing to older people. ALONE services ensure that no older person is left isolated and lonely.

Special packs of theALONE Christmas cards are also available for companies to purchase. By purchasing a pack of 100 or 500 Christmas cards online, companies can make a donation to ALONE while ordering high-qualityChristmas cards which can be personalised with a logo or personal message inside.

Garrett Bridgeman, Managing Director, Mails and Parcels, An Post, said “A personal message is really powerful, particularly at Christmas. We are appealing to members of the public to order one of the An Post personalised Christmas cards and share a few kind words with an older person who may be isolated or lonely this Christmas. It is our hope that this campaign will make Christmas less lonely for many older people and raise significant funds for ALONE.”

Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “We are delighted to partner with An Post this year for Christmas. ALONE offers friendship, support, and housing all aimed at ensuring no older person is left lonely or without the care and support they need. It is our hope that the funds raised through this campaign can bring a little Christmas magic back into the lives of older people and that the money raised will be used to spread that magic throughout the year”.

To order your Christmas Cards and help ALONE today go to www.alone.ie/Christmas/. Cards for older people linked in with ALONE cost €5, with 64% of the cost donated to ALONE. Packs of company cards are priced at €250 for 100 personalised Christmas cards, including postage and a €120 donation to ALONE, and €1250 for 500 personalised Christmas cards, including postage and a €650 donation to ALONE. Companies will receive their stock of cards within three working days, delivered by An Post – See www.alone.ie/Christmas/.

ENDS

About ALONE
2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing. ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

For more information contact:
Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153
Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

ALONE: The First 40 Years Minister Jim Daly launches book celebrating ALONE’s significant anniversary

PRESS RELEASE


Dublin, 7th November 2017   A new book on the history of ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, was launched tonight in the National Library of Ireland, Kildare Street, by Minister of State at the Department of Health Jim Daly T.D., who has special responsibility for Mental Health and Older People.

 

Written by author and journalist Valerie Cox, ALONE: The First 40 Years tells the inspiring story of the early years of ALONE, from Willie Bermingham’s selfless dedication to the people who followed in his footsteps, as well as the new challenges and issues faced by the charity today. The book is also a memory of the poverty, isolation and housing conditions endured by many Dubliners throughout the last forty years.

 

The book records the founding of the charity in 1977 by young fireman after he discovered the bodies of three older people in their homes. It also chronicles the charity’s achievements including the housing complexes it built and the thousands of people who have been befriended by the charity’s inspiring volunteers.

 

Speaking at the launch in the National Library of Ireland, Minister Daly said “ALONE was founded in 1977 as a response to the desperate issues faced by older people in the city. Today, ALONE continues to provide a very valuable service to older people throughout Ireland who find themselves isolated and alone. I am delighted to be launching this book tonight in celebration of such an important and historically significant charity.”
Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “We would like to thank Valerie Cox for undertaking this project and producing such a fantastic book that records the challenges and achievements of our organisation. This is also a story of the joy and laughter between people, which friendship and support brings.”

 

He also thanked the Minister for his attendance, “I would also like to thank Minister Jim Daly who we are working closely with to make real changes for older people at an individual, local and political level, his attendance tonight demonstrates his commitment to older people in Ireland.”

 

Valerie Cox, author of ALONE: The First 40 Years, said, “Working on this book gave me a firsthand account of the issues faced by older people in Ireland – whether it is loneliness, a lack of support, or housing. A lot has changed since 1977, but ALONE is still needed today more than ever. This book is dedicated to the unsung heroes of ALONE, those who continue to volunteer, donate and work to support the older members of our communities.”

 

A number of older people who use ALONE’s services and feature in the book were also present at the launch. Aideen Archibold, a tenant of ALONE’s housing with supports, said, “I am so grateful for the work of ALONE. They’re such helpful, kind and cheerful people who also organise various events for us throughout the year. The work they do is so necessary, and thanks to this organisation, I am very happy to have somewhere in Ireland that I can call home.”

 

Sean Moynihan concluded, “Tonight is a celebration of ALONE and the people involved in the charity’s journey so far who have never forgotten its ethos – to support older people in our society. Together we will work with all parties to achieve our vision to support older people to age at home and be valued and respected in the communities they live.”

 

ALONE: The First 40 Years is available to purchase from Veritas Bookshops  & Easons Bookshop (ISBN 978-1-9997265-0-8).

It can also be purchased online at Veritas and Easons.

 

ENDS

 

About ALONE

2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing.  ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

 

About Valerie Cox

Giving a voice to the voiceless and telling the stories of ordinary people in both urban and rural Ireland has been at the core of Valerie Cox’s many years working as a reporter and broadcaster. She spent over twenty years working on RTÉ radio programmes Morning Ireland, Drivetime and the Today Programme, bringing listeners stories of joy and sorrow, of happiness and loneliness, of crime and its effect on an older community. The issues she’s tackled have been many — the problems of accessing the Fair Deal scheme, the closure of rural Garda Stations and Post Offices, the lack of end -of-life facilities and caring for older people in the community— and she has taken up the cudgel on behalf of those in danger of losing their homes.

 

Valerie has worked with ALONE on a number of occasions, meeting some of the people who are at the heart of this book: the older people they support and their volunteers. She is the author of three previous books, Searching, which tells the story of Ireland’s missing people, The Family Courts and A Ploughing People. She is also a Patron of Wicklow Hospice.

 

Valerie lives in rural Wicklow with her husband Brian, and the couple have five children and four grandchildren.

ALONE – “Demand for older people’s supports has tripled over the past 4 years” Charity releases 2016 Annual Report

PRESS RELEASE

Dublin, 1st November 2017

 

ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, released its 2016 Annual Report today.

Key findings in the 2016 ALONE Annual Report include
• 4,500 people were supported by befriending services nationwide
• 937 older people were supported by ALONE support coordination service
• 108 older people were housed by ALONE
• ALONE volunteers provided 46,800 hours
• 1 in 10 older people require support beyond homecare to live at home , which represents 66,000 people
• By 2046 the number of over 65s will increase by 225%
• By 2046 the number of over 80s will increase by 375%
• By 2022, ALONE plan to support 20,000 older people directly (14,000 older people indirectly) through KMCT, technology. This represents only 18% of those in need
• By 2022, ALONE aim to grow frontline volunteers from 700 to 7,000

Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “Our Annual Report breaks down the services ALONE provides on a daily basis, from housing older people to coordinating supports for all of their needs, offering befriending to those experiencing loneliness and campaigning on behalf of older peoples’ rights. Our services offer a range of supports to enable older people to live independently. In addition to offering these services, in 2016 we teamed up with other age sector charities to campaign and consult with the government to ensure the needs of older people are met.”

The report echoes last week’s ESRI report which stated that the demand for healthcare is projected to increase substantially with rapid growth and ageing of Ireland’s population.

Moynihan continued, “As last week’s ESRI report stated, the demand for home help care and for residential and intermediate care places in nursing homes and other settings is projected to increase by up to 54 per cent by 2030. ALONE believe that right to home care is a major part of solving the impending demand on healthcare, as older people are being forced to remain in acute hospital beds due to lack of supports to go home.”

In 2016, 20% of older people had issues with home adaptations and 10% were unable to keep their home warm. These numbers highlight the lack of housing choices and supports for older people in the community. ALONE believes that Ireland’s impending ageing demographic requires a move away from traditional models of care towards alternative models that harness community resources.

Since 2016, the charity has been developing a technology platform, in partnership with NetwellCASALA, that supports older people to age well at home. The ALONE platform is operated through mobile apps and home sensors. The apps ask daily questions about health and wellbeing, with answers recorded on a tablet by the older person, and separately by a visiting neighbour, carer or family member. The combined answers form a unique pattern, and a change from this can trigger an intervention. Home sensors can detect if the resident has got up today, has entered the toilet or kitchen, and can trigger an intervention eg. raise an alarm that they may have fallen or are too unwell to get up.

Moynihan continued, “ALONE, as a rights based charity has worked for many years to ensure our services are of the highest standards. We have achieved 3 quality awards because we know that the older people we work with deserve quality services. We also are passionate about transparency and accountability, and submit our annual reports to the Charities Regulator.”

“In the last four years we have doubled in size, the demand for our services has tripled, the number of volunteers has tripled and we have introduced new services to support older people to age at home, both directly and indirectly. Prioritising the needs of our older people is something that we would like to see the government and general public take an interest in as inevitably we all grow older and the decisions we make now will impact us later.”

For those who have concerns about their own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of a vulnerable older person in the community, ALONE can be contacted on (01) 679 1032 or visit.

ENDS

About ALONE
2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing. ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

For more information contact:
Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153
Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

ALONE call on the general public to check on older neighbours this Halloween

Dublin, 27th October 2017 ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, is asking people to be mindful of older people in their community this Halloween period. For many older people Halloween can be a distressing time with people calling unexpectedly to the door, playing tricks and setting off bangers and fireworks.

 

Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE commented “We are urging the public to keep an eye on their older neighbours, particularly those who may be living alone, and to consider their needs this Halloween. While many older people may welcome trick or treaters and want to engage in the fun of Halloween, others may not like to answer calls to their homes after dark. We ask that parents, who may be out with children, keep an eye on their older neighbours and that younger people, taking part in Halloween activities, be mindful of the older people in their area.”

 

Moynihan continued, “This weekend also sees the clocks go back and, as we head into darker and longer winter evenings, we are asking people to remember those older neighbours living alone. Winter can be a particularly lonely time for many older people and offering just a few minutes of your time for a chat or to assist an older person in travelling to the local shop or post office can really make a difference.”

 

Those who have concerns for an older person, or older people in need of assistance can contact ALONE on (01) 679 1032. The charity, which depends on donations from the public, has volunteers and staff ready to act on requests for assistance, and works in partnership to ensure all calls for assistance are responded to.

 

Further information, including advice and tips for older people in the cold winter months, can be found on www.alone.ie.

 

ENDS

 

About ALONE

2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing.  ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

 

For more information contact:

Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153

Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

 

ALONE “The government needs to act fast to support Ireland’s aging demographic”

PRESS RELEASE

 

Charity responds to ESRI Report

 

Dublin, 26th October 2017

ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, welcomes today’s ESRI report which states that the demand for healthcare is projected to increase substantially with rapid growth and ageing of Ireland’s population. ALONE believes that this report creates an opportunity to plan and discuss the future provisions of healthcare.

 

Key findings in today’s report include:

  • The population of Ireland is projected to grow by between 14 to 23 per cent adding 640,000 to 1.1 million people;
  • The share of population aged 65 and over is projected to increase from one in eight to one in six;
  • Numbers of people aged 85 and over are projected to almost double;
  • Demand for health and social care is projected to increase across all sectors, with the greatest increases for services for older people;
  • Demand for home help care and for residential and intermediate care places in nursing homes and other settings is projected to increase by up to 54 per cent;

 

ALONE believes that right to home care is a major part of solving the impending demand on healthcare, as older people are being forced to remain in acute hospital beds due to lack of supports to go home.

 

By 2022 Ireland will be short 5,910 nursing home beds[1] which is why ALONE has also been calling on the government to look at Housing with Support models for older people so that they can age in the community. While Rebuilding Ireland’s target for this type of housing is 50 units, the demand is approximately 4,200 units nationally by 2020[2].

 

Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “With Ireland’s older population set to reach 1.4 million over the next 30 years, the state urgently needs to implement supports in the community for older people. Today’s ESRI report supports all those who work with older people and we hope that these findings will lead us all to plan better for the future.”

 

“ALONE is asking the government to prioritise the National Positive Aging Strategy and to allocate additional funding to meet the needs of our rapidly growing and ageing population. Prioritising the needs of our older people is something that we all need to take an interest in as inevitably we all grow older and the decisions we make now will impact us later.”

 

For those who have concerns about their own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of a vulnerable older person in the community, ALONE can be contacted on (01) 679 1032 or visit www.alone.ie.

 

ENDS

 

About ALONE

2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing.  ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

 

For more information contact:

Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153

Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

[1] HIQA Report 2015

[2] ALONE Research

New training for Befriending Network Ireland

2016bnilogo

 

Befriending Network Ireland is introducing the first Support Work & Advocacy Training.

The training will cover topics such as assessments, brief interventions, comprehensive interventions, advocacy, data, and case management.

This exciting training is available to befriending services, as well as other services, who are interested in providing this kind of support to the people they are working with.

Where: Dublin

When: 16 of November from 10 am to 4.30 pm.

Cost: €30 per attendee

If you’re interested in attending this training, or would like more information, please contact Caroline Muller on 01-6791032 or email caroline.muller@alone.ie

ALONE calls for further investments in technologies to support older people to age at home

 

Dublin, 20th October 2017  ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has welcomed the Government’s decision to drop the living alone condition from the Seniors Alert Scheme. The charity is also highlighting the benefits of new assistive technologies in supporting older people in their homes.

 

ALONE believes that the Seniors Alert Scheme should be amended to encompass assistive technology systems which will help to support many more older people to live securely in their own homes with confidence, independence and peace of mind.

 

Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “There are many forms of assistive technology that can support older people to age well at home. We believe that the funding model of the Seniors Alert Scheme should be modified to cover the provision of newer telecare technology in addition to the traditional personal alarm and pendant systems.”

 

He continued, “The current Seniors Alert Scheme is a reactive system, responding to emergency alerts from older people. The model that we propose would operate in a proactive fashion, for example phoning all older people who are linked with the service on a daily basis. The current Seniors Alert Scheme is primarily reliant on the informal carers’ network or the emergency services to respond to alarm alerts but a monitored telecare service, linked to a responder service with social care services on call, could attend to alerts which do not require medical attention, thereby reducing unnecessary emergency ambulance call-outs.”

 

The charity has developed a technology platform, in partnership with NetwellCASALA, that supports older people to age well at home. The ALONE platform is operated through mobile apps and home sensors. The apps ask daily questions about health and wellbeing, with answers recorded on a tablet by the older person, and separately by a visiting neighbour, carer or family member. The combined answers form a unique pattern, and a change from this can trigger an intervention. Home sensors can detect if the resident has got up today, has entered the toilet or kitchen, and can trigger an intervention eg. raise an alarm that they may have fallen or are too unwell to get up.

 

ALONE believes that this type of telecare model would meet with the goals of the National Positive Ageing Strategy, in particular Goal 2 “Support people as they age to maintain, improve or manage their physical and mental health and wellbeing” and Goal 3 “Enable people to age with confidence, security and dignity in their own homes and communities for as long as possible.”

 

Moynihan concluded, “Technology empowers older people to take more control of their health and wellbeing and to help them to remain connected to their community. The personalised monitored alarms give our older citizens security and peace of mind in their own homes but we believe that the government could be doing more to support our aging dempographic. Our technology platform will improve the wellbeing of older people, give peace of mind to their families, carers and volunteer support network and equip existing community supports. A reformed ‘Telecare or Communication Grants Scheme’ could encompass the ALONE Platform, offering further supports to assist older people to age well in their own community.”

 

Those interested in availing of the Seniors Alert Scheme can find contact details for the relevant group in their area at www.pobal.ie or by calling 01-5117222. Those who have concerns for an older person, or older people in need of assistance can contact ALONE on (01) 679 1032 or by visiting www.alone.ie.

 

ENDS

 

About ALONE

2017 marks 40 years since ALONE was founded. Since then the charity has supported thousands of older people to age at home. ALONE works with those who have issues with loneliness and social isolation, lack of services, poor health, poverty, homelessness or housing.  ALONE provides Support Coordination, Housing with Support, Befriending and Campaigning services to over 1,000 older people nationwide every week. ALONE’s services are quality approved and are delivered 365 days a year.

 

For more information contact:

Maree Rigney, Limelight Communications, maree.rigney@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 086 3587153

Kathryn Byrne, Limelight Communications, kathryn.byrne@limelight.ie, 01 668 0600, 085 233 6033

 

How to stay safe during a storm

As Ophelia makes landfall across the country, please remember some top tips for yourself or older people you know.

Tip 1: Stay in

  • Stay inside until the storm passes. It should be over by tomorrow.
  • If you do not already have your torches or matches, try and make do with what you have. Do not go out in the storm to get supplies.
  • Secure any loose items that are outside. Think of older people who may not be able to do it on their own and help if you can.
  • Keep windows locked and pets inside.

Tip 2: Stay calm

  • If you lose power, do not panic. ESB will be aware of the outages in your area and will be in touch.
  • Charge your mobile phone now in case you do lose power.

Tip 3: Stay connected

  • If you’re on your own, be sure to contact someone so they know you’re safe.
  • Reach out to an older person if you know they are on their own to be sure they have everything they need. Be sure to keep yourself safe when helping others.
  • Keep in contact with local council and fire services, or local news, for updates.

If you have an emergency, contact 999. For any other concerns, you can contact 01 679 1032.