Health Minister Michelle O’Neill today visited the Agewell Project in Magherafelt to see their unique service in helping older people maintain their independence.
Speaking during the visit to the Agewell Project, the Minister said: “I am delighted to be given the opportunity to see firsthand the work that Agewell provides for the people within the Mid Ulster area. The project provides an excellent and unique service for older and vulnerable people living in the community.”
The range of services provided by the Agewell Project includes Good Morning Calls, a free telephone service to provide reassurance and a listening ear to older people living on their own. It also provides a home maintenance service and a community development initiative.
Minister O’Neill continued: “I am very aware that our population is getting older and it is important therefore that we find better and more innovative ways of caring for our older people. The Agewell Project is a great example of what can be achieved by organisations working together to help our oldest and most vulnerable maintain their independence and dignity in the community for as long as possible.”
The Minister also met with staff involved in the project: “It is obvious to me that the staff have a passion for their work by their dedication and enthusiasm. I have been greatly impressed by the great care and support that the people of Mid Ulster are receiving through the Agewell Project.”
The Project was launched in 2010 and works in partnership with statutory and voluntary bodies to deliver a range of services for older and vulnerable people in the community.
Notes to editors:
1. The Agewell Project was launched in 2010 and covers the Mid Ulster area. It receives funding from the Big Lottery.
2. The Good Morning Calls service delivers 400 calls, Monday to Friday. It employs 5 full time advisors and 3 volunteers.
3. The home maintenance service has delivered 4,500 jobs in the Mid Ulster area in the past 6 years. It employs 2 handymen.
4. The community development initiative supports community groups working with older people. It has worked with 110 community groups in Mid Ulster since the launch of the project.
5. For further information on the Agewell Project in Mid Ulster contact Shauna Kehoe, Agewell manager, on 028 79632170.
6. Media enquiries about this press release to DOH Press office on 9052 0567, or out of hours contact to Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699715440 and your call will be returned. Follow us on Twitter @healthdpt