Lions clubs fund a playground for Marino
MARINO school was the beneficiary of a cheque for €25,000 presented to them last week by Bray Lions Club and Sugarloaf Lions in Greystones.
Clubs in Wicklow, Leopardstown, Dun Laoghaire, and Killiney, joined their friends last week at Marino to celebrate the handing over of the money.
The Bray and Greystones clubs worked together over the past eight months to raise the funds.
They held quizzes, race nights, walks and more.
The money will go towards the installation of a specialised playground facility.
The playground will support therapeutic intervention and learning.
It will include a turtle and whale springer, soft play areas, and an integrated slide with climbing, swinging and sliding units.
87 per cent of the pupils attending the Marino school present with ASD (autism spectrum disorder) according to the Lions club.
The club wishes to acknowledge the support from the Marino parents committee as well as management and staff.
It is hoped to have work completed on the project in early September. Pupils at Marino range in age from three to 18. MUSIC and fun was the order of the day at the summer concert at Newcastle Hospital last week but with the Minister for Health in attendance, the importance of supporting mental health services was also high on the agenda.
The aim of the summer event, which took place last Wednesday, June 22, is to invite the public to share the facilities of Newcastle Hospital and to promote the importance of mental health to everyone.
Helen Allen event organiser, said that hosting an event with the support of the Garda Band and the local primary school in the grounds of the hospital promotes a positive image in the community of what the mental health service is about.
She was delighted with the very large turnout and to see everyone enjoying the food, music and brilliant sunshine.
Speaking at the event last Wednesday, Minister Simon Harris said that the the promotion of positive mental health was a priority for him.
‘Due to the recent reinstatement of funding for mental health services which I have secured, I am pleased that we can continue to support positive mental health initiatives throughout the country, such as the continued development of Counselling Services Com- munity Mental Health Teams, and the improvement of 24/7 Response and liaison services,’ he said. ‘I look forward to a continuing engagement with staff, service users and the Friends of Newcastle Hospital.’
Justin Brophy, Clinical Director of Services, welcomed the Minister’s attendance and stressed the importance of the role of community services in meeting the needs of people with mental health issues.
The Friends of Newcastle Hospital, who organised the event, welcomed the Minister’s support for the reinstatement of the mental health budget earlier this month but said that funding for mental health care should be viewed as a core necessity.
‘Regardless of the size of the budget, the fact that any minister can reduce a budget so dramatically sends out the message that mental health is the poor relation within the health services,’ said Evelyn Cawley, Chairperson of the Friends of Newcastle Hospital.
‘ The numbers of people seeking help from community services has dramatically increased. Depression, stress, addiction, loneliness, suicide are more familiar than we would like but they are the issues that people have to deal with in their daily lives,’ she added.
Lions Club members hand over a cheque to Marino Community Special School.