A minute for meningitis — Download the ACT app now

Don’t you just love it when a plan comes to fruition. When an objective has been reached. When a difference has been made. And in particular I love it when I see the many worthy causes here in the west set out a long term plan and then go on to reach that. I walk with pride through the Croi building in Newcastle knowing that we ran or walked or shook a bucket to help it. Each time we pass the Galway Hospice we all take some pride from having donated in some small but not insignificant way to its being and its continuation. Those who sleep out for Simon and COPE each year know that their discomfort will help reduce discomfort for those who really need their services.

Every bit you do for MADRA will make the world of difference to a defenceless and unloved dog somewhere and ensure that it will bring light and happiness into the lives of some family who adopts them. When we read about the many services provided by Cancer Care West, we take pride in the knowledge that somewhere at some stage, we have helped the cause.

That goes for all of us. And there are so many more. We are so fortunate to have so many good causes here in the west, taking up the mantle where perhaps Government has let us down, providing services and care where once there was none.

This week I am thrilled that another local charity has reached a milestone and made another significant difference in all our lives. I know the people in ACT for Meningitis very well and can vouch for the fact that they have striven every step of the way to make a difference to stopping this killer or debilitating disease in its track.

Siobhan and Noel Carroll have lived the meningitis nightmare, they live daily with the painful loss of their beautiful daughter Aoibhe, but they have chosen to unselfishly focus that sadness into something positive and in ACT, create a legacy of which young Aoibhe is undoubtedly proud.

As I know only too well, infections of this nature strike quickly and without prejudice. When the symptoms commence, they do so with such pace and ferocity that within hours a life can be lost. Or great debilitating damage can be done. For such an illness, time is of the essence. How many parents panic each night thinking their children may have meningitis instead of a common cold? How many are unaware of the exact symptoms. Yes, they’ve seen and read them countless times, you’ve heard about the glass test, but you’re not sure if it should show this or that and just when you need them, you can’t find them and time is ticking by and you don’t know what to do.

This week ACT for Meningitis has brought out an App — Web development company Digilogue created the app completely free of charge for ACT for Meningitis. And it’s a lifesaver.

If you’re reading this article on your smartphone or if it lies ignored beside you, waiting for you to return to it with itchy fingers, let the first thing you do be to go to the App stopre or Google Play and download the ACT for Meningitis free app. And tell everyone you can to do the same.

This way an awareness of the symptoms will be at your fingertips because as we know, our smartphones lie at our fingertips all the time these days.

Students too fall prey to meningitis every winter. If you have a son or daughter or friend in college, get them to download the app. They might be saving their own live. Or they might be saving a friend’s.

Siobhana and Noel know only too well the need there is for awareness of the symptms of meningitis.

“After losing our own daughter Aoibhe to meningitis when she was just four years old, we realised there was an essential need for people to have instant access to the signs and symptoms of meningitis and thanks to continuing advances in technology this is now possible. Anyone of any age can contract this disease and meningitis can kill in a very short time period, therefore we would urge every single person to download this App as knowing the signs and symptoms can save a life.”

Downloading the ACT app took me about a minute.

It’s a minute you will never regret losing. Do it, now.

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