CareBright is a leading care provider in Munster. This charity was established due to the need for professional and supportive care in the Limerick community and they have been providing care to older people in the community for over 22 years.
CareBright’s main focus is supporting people to live independently in their own homes and provide services to older people, people with intellectual disabilities, post-operative care, specialised dementia care, companionship, and general support. They also provide care for people who require special services such as post-operative, palliative care, chiropody services, or dementia and Alzheimer’s related care. CareBright provides support to those in their home, a community in which they can live in and a social club for the local community.
CareBright prides itself in the 3 C’s: commitment, compassion, and companionship. They promote independence and choice and have built themselves with a social conscience to deliver the most professional and personal services in the community. They are a non-profit, social economy business that has over 400 clients and employs over 200 staff. CareBright has been contributing greatly to the community and offers services for older people in the form of Homecare Packages, Home Help Services and Chiropody, while also being a home care provider providing care for clients in a private capacity.
With the effects of COVID-19 on many lives, CareBright has suffered a loss of funding. The social club and cafe were closed due to government guidelines and to ensure safety amongst the residents in the community. Currently, funding is inadequate and not covering CareBright’s operational costs. It is estimated that CareBright will suffer a huge loss in 2021 due to a lack of funding and the demand for services has increased. Fundraising has become difficult for CareBright due to the challenges of the pandemic, and now more than ever, they need support from the community to be able to stay open.
What the CareBright Community offer
CareBright Community is Ireland’s first purpose-built community for people living with dementia. The community has three bungalows, each containing six private living spaces and gardens. The space and design of each are pivotal in enabling residents to feel a great sense of belonging, comfort, and security. The Community also focuses very strongly on the outdoors. Their expansive 4-acre space has a large kitchen garden, sensory and remembrance gardens, outdoor seating areas, boithrín “little road” style walkways, and animal sanctuary.
The CareBright community aims to enhance a positive living experience, whilst promoting independence within a supportive environment. The people living in the community range from 52 years to 90 years of age. The overarching aim is to ensure that people can grow old and live well in a community of their choosing, with dignity and independence.
It is estimated that 55,000 people are living with dementia in Ireland and by 2026, it is forecasted that the population living with dementia will be 81,922. These figures underline the urgency of planning now for the coming generation of people with dementia, and of seeing ways to mitigate the impending epidemic and its impact on those living with dementia, their families, and the provision of services.
Many people who live with dementia are physically well, they are often on minimal medication and live very productive healthy lifestyles. Research has shown that by living in a household model; continuing routine tasks; having support for family and friends; and, educating the wider community you can reap major benefits for all involved.
Yarn Social Day Club
The Yarn Social Day Club is an integral part of CareBright’s Community Hub. Residents attend the Social club where they meet with other members of the wider community who are also living with dementia.
The purpose of the Yarn Social Day Club is to provide a person-centred setting focused on social networking activities promoting vital components of well-being including feelings of self-worth (self-esteem), autonomy (decision making choices), social ease (connecting with peers), and security (ability to trust that everything will be ok). The club is open to the public, inviting people from the community to avail of these services. Its secondary purpose is to give support to family caregivers allowing them time to recharge and catch up with day-to-day responsibilities outside their caring roles.
Activities include listening to music, dancing, arts & crafts, bingo, and appropriate physical exercise. These activities focus on stimulating the mind while maintaining continual use of a person’s abilities and skills allowing participants to feel a greater sense of belonging, comfort, and security, and enjoyment.
Listen to General Manager Colette Ryan on The Humanli Podcast:
“Staff are always pleasant & very good to my mum. The Service is a blessing to me and gives me a break.”
“No words can convey our gratitude & thanks to all involved in the Yarn Social Day Club Bruff. You are truly lifesavers. Mum attends twice weekly and is a happier person for it.”
“I believe my mother is well catered for in this facility and she has well looked after. Without YSDC CareBright we would struggle to provide her with the social aspect of her life that she needs. A job well done by everyone. Excellent is a word that springs to mind”
Dave’s Story – Son of a resident living in the CareBright community
“From 2009, since my Mam passed away, I have been on a journey with my Dad and it has been the toughest challenge of my life. It was not until March 2018 when I made that first contact with CareBright that all my hopes and dreams for Dad were coming through. My dad’s life started to fade drastically when my Mam died, and throughout those years what engulfed him was a deep sense of loneliness as his wife was his best friend and without her, he lost a reason to live.
For years, I have worked tirelessly to try and protect and support him in the recovery of his various, complex health issues, and diagnoses. All my efforts however were severely thwarted when he received the Lewy body Dementia diagnosis in 2017. However, that was then and this is now! Once more, I have light and joy again in my life. CareBright’s ethos and philosophy is a carbon copy of the hopes and dreams I had for my dad – social integration with security and safety in an environment that is wonderfully conducive to health and wellbeing, happiness, and inclusivity. I can once more see a spark in his eye and his old sense of humour is coming back, which for me is astounding, heart-warming, and life-changing. CareBright does not just provide a care service for patients; it provides peace of mind and support for family members also. It does not look at my Dad as a client. It treats him as a person, an individual, someone whose illness does not determine his place in this world. CareBright Community is a place that exudes compassion and affords dignity and respect to all its residents.
Nisha and all the staff in CareBright are not just employees who turn up for work. They have become an extension of my Dad’s life. Their kindness, expertise, and understanding are what make CareBright the hub of hope. I can see it on all their faces, in every email and each contact, that they care for Dad and that they want the best for him. They want him to thrive and grow and as someone who has for a large part of their journey felt helpless and hopeless, their ability and genuine want to make a difference gives rise to a brand new faith in humanity, for me. Dad gave up a lot to move to CareBright and while the journey is still challenging, as is the nature of his Dementia, he has gained so much more. He no longer sits at home for hours without company or stimulation. I no longer have sleepless nights worrying and panicking. It is, without doubt, the most amazing community that allows people to feel like they belong and more importantly that their diagnosis does not define them. My Dad might have Dementia but Dementia does not have my Dad. Thank you CareBright for having a vision and more importantly, the courage to bring it to fruition.”