GRASSROOTS DIARY CLAIRE FOX Independent
A woman who likes to get things done, she set about trying to do something to fill the gap but realised — despite all the fundraising for mental health charities — very little of that money filtered its way back to West Cork.
People would raise thousands in West Cork each year but the charities would be based in Dublin or other cities and none of the funding would work its way down here,” says Noreen.
Seven years after the death of her husband Noreen set up Lisheens House Suicide Prevention Charity in Skibbereen to provide free counselling and support to people throughout the county of Cork.
Lisheen House makes local services available for local people.
“We provide services all over Cork. Wherever funding takes place we try to fund a service in that area, it doesn’t matter if you’re in Cork city or north Cork,” she says.
Yoga classes, music therapy and meditation also takes place in Lisheens House. Noreen believes the ethos of the charity can be replicated in other rural areas.
The name Lisheens House is the name of the family home Noreen and Donal lived in with their family of three children. “I felt it fitting that others would find peace and comfort under the name of the place he had worked so hard to create,” says Noreen. She adds that people from all walks of life with all sorts of issues from depression to drug addiction come to Lisheens House for help, with loneliness being one of the most prevalent issues.
“It can be very isolating down here and there is still a stigma around depression. Many people’s children move away and they are left on their own. It’s very sad,” she says.
For more information on the services Lisheens House provides or if you would like to donate call (028) 51950.
:Picture shows Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People Jim Daly TD with Noreen Murphy, founder, Lisheens House. PHOTO: Andy GIBSON
Lisheens House MozART workshop for Clonakilty Wellness Week hosted by Co Action was enjoyed by all participants.
Each painted a piece of the Mozart silhouette whilst listening to his music and the pieces were joined together to make this colourful collaborative panting.
BY EMMA CONNOLLY Southern Star April 2018
A CAMPAIGN to tackle rural isolation and the mental health problems it can cause, including suicide, is getting underway in West Cork. It’s spearheaded by Lisheens House suicide prevention centre, which is launching a ‘Friendly Phone Call’ service to target those living in remote areas of the region, and who are suffering from a lack of human interaction.
Mick Kearns of the community- based mental health service will outline details of the initiative, which will get underway this autumn, at an event in the West Cork Hotel in Skibbereen at 8pm on May 3rd. Loneliness is a very real problem in this area, as more than half of the farmers who took part in The Southern Star’s recent Great West Cork Farming Survey admitted to feeling isolated in their work. Almost all respondents agreed that there are not enough mental health supports available for the agri sector.
Suicide is also a huge issue in West Cork and there have been a number of suicides of young men in recent months. Mick added: ‘Isolation is a huge contributory factor to suicide. This is about addressing and minimising factors that can lead to that, and putting in place services that people in urban areas take for granted.’ Also speaking next Thursday night will be Clare garda Edel Burke who has worked extensively to tackle this problem in both Clare and Mayo.
‘It started back in 2014 when I was based in a rural station and while on patrol I realised that for some people, I would be the only person they would speak to,’ she explained.
Her solution was to run information evenings attended by various agencies, including the HSE and the Samaritans, to give people information and options.
Speaking with her on the evening will be West Cork Garda crime prevention officer Sgt Ian O’Callaghan, who said this region had a higher than average older population, made up of a lot of farmers in isolated areas.
‘By their nature, these people are very trusting. Seasonally, we see an increase in bogus callers who target vulnerable isolated people by charging exorbitant amounts of money to do work or who carry out deception-type burglaries, by purporting to be from, say, a State agency or a utility company. I’ll be raising awareness and talking about security and protection.’ Rural development officer with the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association Sean Sherlock will also attend.
Mick said: ‘The phone service will see people registering, outlining what they want to talk about and agreeing a time of day for that call. If any mental health or medical issues emerge during those conversations, they will be referred on. To complement it, we’ll be running social events like an evening of cards or music every few weeks.’ In existence for three years, and relying entirely on fundraising, Lisheens House is currently applying for HSE funding, which Mick said would be crucial for its future.
Many of us are unsure what to do when we have friends or relatives who seem depressed or anxious. Doing and saying nothing can feel like the safest thing to do, but anyone can learn some simple steps that will provide support and make a difference, and may save lives. Question Persuade and Refer (QPR) is a recognized and effective training programme that can help you learn those steps in a one-off, two-hour session delivered by experienced and qualified trainers. Lisheens House are delivering this course free of charge to anyone who would like to attend.
Next sessions are
Venue: Lisheens House Ilen St. Skibbereen
Date: Wednesday 4th April
Time: 7 pm
Venue: Riverview Shopping Centre, Bandon
Wednesday 11th April at
Venue: Quality Hotel, Clonakilty
Wednesday 18th April at
All Welcome – No charge – Certificates Issued – Experienced Trainers
Question Persuade and Refer Training Session
KEY COMPONENTS COVERED IN TRAINING:
- How to Question, Persuade and Refer someone who may be suicidal
- How to get help for yourself or learn more about preventing suicide
- The common causes of suicidal behavior
- The warning signs of suicide
- How to get help for someone in crisis
To book a place on one of our workshops please fill out the form below, call our office on 028 51950 or email us at this link