FAMILY Carers Ireland (FCI) and Netwatch have joined forces to shine a light on family caring in Ireland. Today they have launched the ‘Netwatch Year of the Family Carer’.
The ‘Netwatch Year of the Family Carer’ is a tribute to Ireland’s more than 355,000 family carers who tirelessly care for care for sick, infirm, disabled and elderly loved ones at home.
As the country shut down in March, family carers stepped up to protect the people they care for safely at home, thus keeping hospital beds free.
By doing so, family carers have played a major role in lessening the spread of coronavirus in Ireland. This comes at great personal cost as outlined in the first national ‘State of Caring ‘report released in September whilst saving the State an estimated €10bn annually.
Every day, family carers make an extraordinary contribution to the national health care system. To acknowledge this, FCI has organised a number of events as part of the ‘Netwatch Year of the Family Carer’ including a free online ‘Concert for Carers’ on November 28 and an exhibition featuring family carer portraits which are available to purchase for €5,000 via www.familycarers.ie with proceeds going into a Hardship Fund for those most affected by the pandemic.
Celtic Tenor, Matthew Gilsenan and special guest Deirdre Shannon from Celtic Women, will perform inspirational songs to honour family carers and their loved ones. Family Carers Ireland patrons, Mary Kennedy and Marty Whelan will host the special event. Highlights from the evening will include a special song ‘Real Heroes Go Unsung’ penned by John Spillane which featured on the RTÉ documentary, ‘David Brophy’s Choir of Unsung Heroes’ earlier this year.
Catherine Cox, Head of Communication and Policy at Family Carers Ireland said: “2020 has been a challenging year for most and none more so than for family carers. We are proud to announce the ‘Netwatch Year of the Family Carer’ and we want to thank Wendy and all at Netwatch for their ongoing support.”
The free online concert is being broadcast via a stream on the Family Carers Ireland Facebook page (www.facebook.com/familycarers) and onwww.familycarers.ie. People who wish to pledge their support to the campaign can donate via www.familycarers.ie or Text FAMILY CARERS to 50300 to donate €4. Text costs €4. Family Carers Ireland will receive a minimum of €3.60. Service Provider: LIKECHARITY. Helpline: 076 6805278.