Kilkenny groups can avail of vital supports for older people

Over 400 people in Kilkenny avail of personal alarms

Sam Matthews

Reporter:

Sam Matthews

Email:

sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

Pobal

Seniors Alert Scheme, provides funding for personal monitored alarms for vulnerable older people

Pobal, the intermediary body that manages programmes funded by Government and the EU, is calling on community groups in County Kilkenny to avail of supports for older persons under the Seniors Alert Scheme (SAS).

Managed by Pobal on behalf of the Department of Rural and Community Development, the Seniors Alert Scheme, provides funding for personal monitored alarms for vulnerable older people. While the scheme has expanded, with 400 older people in County Kilkenny availing of personal monitored alarms, there is still scope for the provision of further alarms.

A survey of those who availed of the scheme nationally between September 2015 and December 2016 found 68% were living alone, 67% were female, while 51% of all participants were over the age of 80. Just over half cited an ‘existing health condition’ as one of the reasons for applying to the Scheme, while ‘fear of crime’ (13%) and ‘peace of mind’ (27%) were other contributory factors. For those living in rural areas, isolation and crime rated highest in their motivation for applying to the scheme.

"The Seniors Alert Scheme is a fantastic initiative as it enables people with limited means to remain living securely in their homes with confidence, independence and peace of mind," says Richard Deane of Pobal.

"Pobal funds the alarm unit on behalf of the Department of Rural and Community Development and the Scheme is administered locally by community and voluntary groups. The scheme is a community response to keeping people connected and there are Seniors Alert Scheme approved groups in all 26 counties, all of which are listed on Pobal.ie."

Alarms, which are monitored 24 hours, can be worn as a pendant or around the wrist like a watch, ensuring assistance is always available no matter where the person is in their house.

"We are also always keen to hear from community groups that may be interested in delivering the scheme locally," said Mr Deane.

To find out about your local community group or how to get involved please contact Pobal on 01-5117222.

Pobal began administering the Scheme in September 2015. A new iteration of the Seniors Alert Scheme will be launched later this year, it is currently going through a procurement process being carried out by Pobal on behalf of the Department of Rural and Community Development.