On Friday, 14th of October Minister of State for Public Health, Wellbeing and National Drugs Strategy, Frank Feighan TD will visit Athy Library to launch Athy as a Sláintecare Healthy Community area.
Introduced nationally in 2021, Sláintecare Healthy Communities is a cross-Government initiative to deliver increased health and wellbeing services to 19 community areas across Ireland.
The launch of Athy Sláintecare Healthy Community is the successful culmination of close collaboration between partners to establish Athy as a Sláintecare Health Community site. These partners include the Department of Health, the HSE, Kildare County Council, County Kildare Leader Partnership and Athy Family resource centre.
The event will highlight the evidence-based programmes and community initiatives that have been established across the Athy Area and the plans for Sláintecare with input from lead agencies and the local community.
The launch will take place at 2.30pm in Athy Library with a number of guest speakers including Cathaoirleach of the County of Kildare, Cllr Fintan Brett, Minister of State for Public Health, Wellbeing and National Drugs Strategy, Frank Feighan TD, Margaret McQuillan HSE Dublin South, Kildare, West Wicklow Head of Health and Wellbeing, and Marian Higgins, Director of Services, Kildare County Council.
The Athy Sláintecare Healthy Communities Programme supported by the HSE Sláintecare Healthy Community Coordinator Áine Buggy, HSE Health Promotion and Improvement Officer Áine O’Gorman and the Kildare County Council Healthy Communities Local Development Officer Maria Healy aims to support people’s wellbeing, within the community and provide better access to a range of services needed to help improve and promote healthier lifestyle behaviours.
Athy Sláintecare Healthy Community programme in the area include:
Programmes to support people to stop smoking:
Stop Smoking Advisor – Offering one to one support and access to free Nicotine Replacement Therapy (patches, lozenges, gum and nicotine mist) to those who wish to quit smoking
We Can Quit – A friendly and supportive peer led stop smoking group delivered locally for men and women. It offers free Nicotine Replacement Therapy (patches, lozenges, gum, and mouth-spray) to help people quit smoking and stay quit for good
Making Every Contact Count – Empowering local health professionals to deliver brief interventions and advice for patients to support healthy behaviours
Social Prescribing – A Social Prescribing link worker works with individuals to reduce social isolation and link them into community activities and services.
Parenting Programmes –Parents Plus aims to promote positive caring relationships between children, teenagers, and their parents and to support parents in managing common behaviours and development issues through enhancing parents’ knowledge, skills and confidence.
Healthy Food Made Easy – Community delivery of healthy cooking and nutrition programme. It offers insight into nutrition and cookery courses that help people to change to a healthy diet, plan meals on a budget and make easy to cook meals.
In addition, resources are secured through the Sláintecare Enhancement Fund to aid long term sustainable positive change. This includes significant enhancements recently made to the Peoples Park in Athy, to aid accessibility for all. This will enable broader and more frequent use of the park particularly for older people, parents of young children and people with disabilities. Similar works will also be carried out along the Barrow Walkway and along the Monasterevin Road in 2022.
Seed Funding is also being allocated locally to support increased engagement and opportunity for participation in healthier lifestyles through a range of health and wellbeing initiatives. These initiatives will initially focus on physical activity, environment, community participation, and creative development. Sláintecare Healthy Communities is also partnering with the Royal College of Surgeons on a Community Health and Wellbeing Assessment Survey ‘Connect 5 Athy’. This survey is accessible online at www.connect5.ie and at the Athy Library.
Members of the public are welcome to attend. If you are interested in attending please email firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm your attendance at the event.