Ring to unveil new vehicle for Alzheimer’s patients and turn the sod at Castlebar Scout Den

Michael Ring TD the Minister for Rural and Community Development, will today Friday, January 11 at 2pm officially unveil a new wheelchair accessible vehicle for Foxford and District Alzheimer’s Trust  at an event at the Michael Davitt Museum in Straide.

Minister Ring will also announce a once off funding allocation of €40,000 for the museum, then tomorrow (Saturday ) Minister Ring will officially turn the sod at the site of the new Castlebar Scout Den.

Speaking ahead of the unveiling of the new wheelchair accessible bus, Minister Ring said: "This bus will help many people to access the services of the Foxford and District Alzheimer’s Trust for many years to come. The new bus service will allow an increased rate of access to those looking to avail of the daycare service but who are currently unable to do so due to the lack of transport.

"The bus has been purchased following an allocation of €37,000 under my Department’s CLAR programme last October. Five other community care organisations in Mayo also received funding for vehicles last year.

"I have been informed that the bus service will initially operate on Tuesday, Wednesday and Fridays. On the days that the daycare is non-operational the bus will be used to support people living with dementia to avail of appointments and to support those living with dementia to remain active and visible within their community.

"In total, almost €800,000 was allocated to communities in Mayo last year under the CLÁR Programme covering a variety of investments including playgrounds, safety measures at schools and equipment for GP’s volunteering for the Irish Community Rapid Response. It’s great to see CLÁR funding making a difference to people living in Mayo and throughout rural Ireland.”

Minister Ring will also announce €40,000 in funding from the Department of Rural and Community Development which will support plans to develop the Michael Davitt Museum as a Centre of Excellence and will be used to support the employment of a cultural development officer with expertise in museum management.

Speaking ahead of the funding announcement for the Michael Davitt Museum, Minister Ring said: "I am delighted that an allocation of €40,000 from my Department will support the development of the Michael Davitt Museum as a Centre of Excellence. The centre reminds us of our past and our culture and these type of initiatives bring immense benefits to the local area from a social inclusion perspective.’’

Speaking ahead of the event to mark the construction of the Castlebar Scout Den, Minister Ring said: "I want to commend all involved for having the vision and ambition to build Mayo’s first ever purpose-built den. The new den will, no doubt, be of great benefit to both the young people and volunteers who use it and indeed it will be of benefit to the wider Castlebar community. The project is being supported with €300,000 from the LEADER Programme which is administered by my Department.

"Scouting provides a wonderful outlet and important life skills to young people. It also helps foster a love of our great outdoors and an appreciation, at an early age, of the benefits of working together.

"With this investment, Castlebar will have a top of the range scouting den which will allow the group to increase numbers and will include facilities for wheelchair access. This is a real coup for the town and is fantastic news for local parents and young people."

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