Atlantic Makes Grants of €14.7m to Improve Care for People with Dementia
Resource type: News
The Atlantic Philanthropies |
The Atlantic Philanthropies is making new grants totaling €14.7 million to improve the care and wellbeing of people living with dementia in the Republic of Ireland. These grants are the subject of ongoing discussions with the Government.
The grants are being made to:
- The Health Service Executive (€12m)
- The Health Research Board (€2.7m)
Today Christopher G. Oechsli, President and CEO of the Atlantic Philanthrophies, said that the foundation’s final grants, in Ireland and elsewhere, are targeted at select challenges that Atlantic has historically addressed.
“A very few significant investments are being made in initiatives that are at or building toward a tipping point, where catalytic efforts are most likely to expand and sustain opportunity and create more equitable outcomes. These culminating Atlantic grants, therefore, will be especially important for those, like people living with dementia, who are vulnerable and face particularly difficult obstacles,” Mr. Oechsli explained.
“These grants are being made for what our Founding Chairman Chuck Feeney calls ‘the highest and best use’ of our limited remaining funds,” he said.
Mr. Oechsli added: “Our final grants will draw on several of the issues, themes and most effective approaches we have applied in our three decades of grantmaking, and will help leverage and amplify the expertise and resources of others in these fields, including government.”
Ms. Mary Sutton, Country Director, Republic of Ireland, Atlantic Philanthropies described dementia as one of the greatest health and social care challenges of the 21st century. “We are good at devising strategy in Ireland but the key is implementation and follow through.”
“In the global fight back against the epidemic that is dementia the aspiration is that Ireland could be at the forefront of this,” Ms. Sutton said. She added that key elements are the support of research and giving a voice to people with dementia and their caregivers.
Dementia is the leading cause of dependency and disability among the older population (World Health Organization [WHO], 2012). The number of people living with dementia worldwide is estimated at 35.6 million, a number set to double by 2030 and triple by 2050 (WHO). In the Republic of Ireland, it is estimated that 42,000 people have dementia, which is projected to rise to 68,000 by 2021 and 152,000 by 2046. The overall cost of dementia in ROI is estimated at more than €1.7 billion annually.
Since 2004, the Atlantic Philanthropies funded several gerontological centres and built a base in research and advocacy. These foundational investments included a small number for dementia to build research and develop prevention models at Trinity College Dublin; support the Alzheimer Society of Ireland (ASI) to build an effective advocacy platform; and fund research, education and training at St. James’s Hospital.
Atlantic’s €9.6 million spend on dementia in the Republic of Ireland since 2012 has leveraged an additional €5.8 million from the HSE. These investments were designed primarily to build momentum towards a strong Government-led national dementia strategy impacting key areas of practice and policy.
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