Senior Help Line celebrates tenth anniversary
Resource type: News
Galway Advertiser |
President McAleese to launch Galway centre
By Martina Nee
More than 60,000 calls have been received by Senior Help Line which is celebrating its 10th anniversary with its first ever national conference in Galway.
The two day conference, entitled ‘Reflecting on the Past and Shaping the Future’, began yesterday and will see over 230 Senior Help Line volunteers from 13 centres from all over the country attending. During her visit to Galway today, patron of Senior Help Line President Mary McAleese will also open a new Help Line Centre.
Senior Help Line was established by Mary Nally and supported by the Health Service Executive (HSE) and Atlantic Philanthropies.
An independent evaluation of the service found that it has made a valuable contribution to the health and well-being of both older callers and volunteers. Since 1998, more than 60,000 calls have been handled. Most of the callers either live alone or feel alone and many lead solitary lives with few people to speak to. Callers may usually want human contact, want to discuss a problem, or are just phoning for a chat. The most popular time for calls is in the evenings and Monday mornings.
Senior Help Line volunteers have also found that the majority of calls are received during Halloween, Christmas, and increasingly during the summer holidays as families go away, and community support systems for older people may also discontinue.
President McAleese will officially open the Galway Senior Help Line centre and will talk to the Aisling Centre, New York, which is the site of Senior Help Line’s next centre – the first Senior Help Line centre to open in the USA.