“Bernie is really availing of everything the community has to offer. She’s a very outgoing, bubbly personality and she loves meeting new people and telling them her news. She’s actually volunteering in the local St Vincent de Paul shop. This is part of the plan to develop her CV and experience the workplace and that’s going extremely well for her and she’s very excited.” - Christina Irwin, Area Manager, Mayo Community Living

Bernie is very positive, friendly and loves to have the chats. She lived in institutional care for decades where opportunities were limited largely to facilities within a disability campus setting. “I came from Áras Attracta. I didn’t like it. Because [there were] too many people in it.” In 2018, she moved to her own home in Ballina with two friends, with support from the HSE and Genio (through the Service Reform Fund). For the first time, she is experiencing life as a member of the local community, getting the opportunity to make decisions for herself and demonstrate her potential and ability. When she was in Áras Attracta food was delivered from a central kitchen, so she never saw food prepared. She never went shopping in a supermarket to choose her own food. Now she has a home with a kitchen where she can see and smell the food being cooked. She is supported to do her own shopping and is taking part in a cookery course. She also joined the local Slimming World group and has already made friends in the community. She loves fashion and her dream is to work in a clothes shop, so she is currently getting work experience by volunteering at a local St. Vincent de Paul shop. Her world has expanded hugely within a year and her future has so much potential.

19-21 Westland Square
Pearse St., Dublin 2, D02 YH27, Ireland
Phone +353 1 707 1700
Email [email protected]