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.

 

ALONE expresses concern for older people in need following red weather warning

Dublin, 15th October 2017  ALONE, the charity which supports older people in need, is urging older people to take extra care following the status red wind warning by Met Éireann. The entire country has been placed under a status red wind warning with Hurricane Ophelia set to hit our shores tomorrow morning. People are being advised to stay indoors.

 

Met Éireann said: “Ex-Hurricane Ophelia is forecast to track directly over Ireland during the daytime tomorrow. Violent and destructive gusts are forecast with all areas at risk and in particular the southwest and south in the morning, and eastern counties in the afternoon.”

 

Older people can be more vulnerable during poor weather and stormy conditions. Older people most at risk are those living alone, those with health issues, and those with limited mobility. ALONE is calling on members of the public to check on their older neighbours and assist them if they need to travel to the local shop or post office during the bad weather. ALONE is also asking older people who are concerned about their own wellbeing during the stormy weather to call for assistance and help if needed.

 

Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE commented, “Following a status red weather warning from Met Éireann we are calling on all members of the public to remember their older neighbours living alone and to consider their needs. We’re advising older people to be prepared by ensuring they have adequate heat, medication, food and to stay indoors where possible.”

 

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. ALONE can assist and advise on issues relation to food, heat, or medication. Older people are also advised to have a list of important phone numbers close to their home phone.

 

Further information, including advice and tips for older people in cold weather conditions, 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 responds to Budget 2018

Dublin, 10th October 2017 ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, has welcomed the increase to the state pension, announced as part of Budget 2018, but stated that the government needs to do more to support Ireland’s aging demographic.

 

ALONE partnered with a number of other aging charities, including Active Retirement Ireland, Age Action, Age and Opportunity, Senior Citizens Parliament and Third Age, for their pre-budget submission where they called for an increase in the state pension, household benefits and a focus on transport in rural areas.

 

Following today’s Budget 2018 announcement, Sean Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “While we welcome the €5 increase to the pension, we have been campaigning for an indexing of the pension to ensure that its value is safeguarded for older people. This would end the yearly calls for pension increases and give older people fair financial independence.”

 

“Older people are highly dependent on the state pension and the vast majority rely on social welfare payments to protect them from poverty. There has to be particular concern for those living alone, those with incomplete contribution records who will not receive this increase – such as widows, carers, and people with long-term disability/illness.”

 

In terms of social benefits announced for older people, Moynihan commented, “Fuel allowance is to be increased but we would like to see it restored to a unit cost method. The new telephone support of €2.50 per week for those on the living alone and fuel allowance will enable older people to feel safe in their own homes but, again, not all older people will be entitled to this allowance. We would also like to see the Christmas bonus restored to 100%. This additional payment at Christmas time was abolished in 2008, a move which effectively took a full weekly social protection payment away.”

 

In response to the increased fund of €1.83 billion for housing in 2018, Moynihan commented, “We welcome this increase but there has been no mention of housing for older people or adaptive housing yet. If we focus on housing with supports for older people now, we won’t find ourselves in a situation of another housing crisis as the demographic continues to age.”

 

Following Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe’s announcement of a €90 million healthcare access plan that will ensure patients avail of medical care in the “most appropriate setting to them”, ALONE is hopeful that this will include homecare packages for older people. Moynihan said, “Studies show that 50% of older people waiting for, or sent to, nursing homes from hospital wished to remain at home and possibly could have done so, demonstrating the absolute need for there to be an increase in the home care budget to provide options for the older population across the country.”

 

Moynihan concluded, “ALONE will continue to campaign for the National Positive Aging Strategy, of which there was no mention in today’s Budget announcement. As Ireland’s older population is set to reach 1.4million over the next 30 years, supporting older people must be a priority for every government.”

 

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.

ALONE announce new media partnership with Dublin City FM

 

CEO of ALONE, Seán Moynihan and CEO of Dublin City FM, Mick Hanley
CEO of ALONE, Seán Moynihan and CEO of Dublin City FM, Mick Hanley

 

New alliance with Dublin City FM to offer further support towards older people in Dublin and across the nation

 

Dublin, 28th September 2017 ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, are delighted to announce a new media partnership with Dublin City FM. This alliance will support the work of ALONE, as it aims to raise awareness of issues facing older people living in Ireland.

 

This new move will see ALONE’s work receive increased media presence, emphasising the issues concerning older people. ALONE provides services including Support Coordination, Befriending, Housing Support and campaigns on topics such as housing, poor services and more, which offer vital support to older people in Ireland. This new partnership will aim to improve awareness of this work and opportunities for public and recipient involvement.

 

Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, commented, “We are delighted to begin this new partnership with Dublin City FM. It points to the prevalence of issues facing older people and highlights the importance of ALONE’s work as we fight to combat these. By partnering with us, Dublin City FM recognise these issues and I look forward to seeing how our work together can ultimately help older people.”

 

He continued, “This alliance will greatly help to communicate ALONE’s services and messages to the public, bringing such issues of homelessness, loneliness and lack of supports to the forefront of listeners’ awareness. This is of increasing importance as Ireland faces a rapidly growing older demographic.”

 

CEO of Dublin City FM, Mick Hanley, spoke on the new partnership, “Dublin City FM is excited to embark on this new partnership with ALONE. We greatly appreciate the work they have achieved and hope to support this work, and further the benefit to older people in Dublin. The issues that ALONE campaigns for are central to our society, deserving of attention and action. Together, Dublin City FM aims to be a part of this action.”

 

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

 

ENDS

 dubcity103-2logo   alonelogoendline

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

 

 

This International Day of Older Persons ALONE calls on government to invest in Housing with Support

26th September 2017, Dublin  This International Day of Older Persons on 1st October, ALONE, the charity that supports older people to age at home, is celebrating the contribution of Ireland’s older generation and encouraging the public to recognise the older people in their family and community. The charity is highlighting the importance of positive aging in the community and the provision of supports to enable older people to age at home.

 

CEO of ALONE, Sean Moynihan said, “With Ireland’s older population set to reach 1.4 million over the next 30 years, the provision of quality home care packages for older people is a necessity. ALONE believes that it is vitally important that the government invest in services and supports in the community to enable older people to age at home.”

 

In 2016, 20% of older people had issues with home adaptations and 10% were unable to keep their home warm.[1] 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.

 

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.

 

Sean Moynihan continued, “A recent report by Active Retirement Ireland revealed that just 1% of their members wish to age in a nursing home.[2] Our platform will allow older people to age at home safely. It 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.”

 

ALONE has 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[3].

 

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

 

ENDS

Note to the Editor:

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] HaPAI survey 2016,

[2] http://www.activeirl.ie/news-events/report-just-1-of-older-people-want-to-age-in-nursing-homes-or-long-term-care-facilities

[3] ALONE Research