As you are aware of Ballinderreen GAA started it's Healthy Club Project two years ago. We decided to focus on Player and Personnel Development and Community Development through Social Inclusion. Throughout our process we have had a number of activities in these categories but our most successful has been our partnership with our Local National School , Cope and Blake Manor Nursing Home.
We identified that in our community we had a number of people who suffer Social Isolation and set out to change this.
We decided to form a monthly Lunch Club in our Local Community Centre. We have our meals supplied from Cope and charge those in attendance a nominal fee of five euro per person. For this they get a main course and dessert tea coffee and cake. Cope's meals are fantastic in meeting all dietary requirements. After Lunch we have a free game or two of bingo. The Club covers the excess cost of the meals bingo prizes and tea/coffee. On average we have between 30 to 36 people who attend. These are older people within our community, resident's of Blake Manor Nursing Home and people in residential care homes from the Brothers of Charity who live locally. What is special about our Lunch Club is the number of volunteers we have on average 15 people who help but we have 4 transition year students who hate to miss it and they are the highlight of the Club. Our local national school students give a Christmas concert and are another highlight of the Club.
Now I mentioned our National School and Blake Manor earlier and I just want to inform you that they are a brilliant partnership with us. We are very lucky that our 5th/6th class students visit the Nursing Home resident's and do 3 activities with them. They do a combined art and crafts class, a cooking class and a music class together. Each learning from one and other. The children are supervised as are the resident's so nobody is put at risk. The feed back from both students and resident's has been phenomenal. The ability to connect some of the oldest members with some of the youngest is what we are most delighted with. The interaction between both parties is delightful to watch. Our underage Hurling and Camogie teams also host a training session on the grounds of Blake Manor Nursing Home during the summer months and the resident's come out to watch and support them.
Photos from our events below: