Every year, Age NI provides over half a million hours of care to older people who need our help and support in Northern Ireland. You may know someone who goes to one of our day centres, or who gets help at home from our care workers. Or perhaps you know someone who may need our care one day soon.
My name is Patricia and I look after Age NI care services. I've been working with the charity for 23 years and I've seen first-hand how important it is for older people, and their families, to get the little bit of care they need to stay as independent as possible.
Our 14 day centres do just that. The best way to describe them is a home from home. In all my years working with Age NI, I've seen people come along to our day centres and find friends and comfort.
Death of a loved one, illness, onset of dementia and other big life changes can leave people feeling lost and lonely. We try to make sure they are supported to feel like themselves again.
Elsie’s Mum Nelly goes to an Age NI day centre in Castlewellan for older people living with dementia.
'I'm a full time carer to my Mum, Nelly, who is 94. She’s been going to the Age NI day centre in Castlewellan a few days a week for over 10 years. Looking back, the change in my Mum happened very unexpectedly. She was getting quite anxious and having mood-swings. I know now that her behaviour was because of dementia.
'My Mum loves getting out and about and the Age NI carers are amazing with her. They really help her to feel calm and at ease, and they see Nelly for herself, not the woman with dementia. I rely so much on the respite the day centre provides too. It’s a blessing and a relief.'
We're living in difficult economic times and it’s getting more and more difficult for charities to find the money to help more people like Elsie and Nelly access the practical and emotional support that they both need, as a carer and as an older person living with dementia.
Many of our day centres provide practical help like transport, pharmacy or optician visits, and hairdressing appointments. Imagine what life would be like if you weren’t able to do the little things in life that make you feel like yourself.
This year, through this appeal to you, we need to raise £32,000 more than last year to provide the services that many older people and their families rely on.
That’s why we need your help. More than ever, your donation can make a real difference. Please support us if you can.
Donate online or call us on 028 9024 5729.
Head of Care Services