Minister Callely opens Care Alliance Ireland´s National Conference
Mr. Ivor Callely, TD, Minister for Services for Older People, offered his congratulations to Care Alliance Ireland at the opening of its National Conference, “Helping Ourselves – The Role of Advocacy in Caring.”
The Minister expressed his admiration for the work of the various voluntary organisations, not least Care Alliance Ireland.
He went on to say that he regards it as privilege to be associated with an event that recognises the enormous contribution of people involved in a caring role, in support of dependent family members or friends, and he welcomed the opportunity to meet those people and to express his encouragement and support for them.
Minister Callely described advocacy as a process of empowerment. He said that, while a large proportion of older people are well able to represent themselves, many do not have the personal or other resources to speak up for themselves.
The Minister added that advocacy, in relation to older people could be viewed in the following way: older people, by reason of disability, frailty, marginalisation, institutionalisation, financial circumstances or even social attitudes, might find themselves in a vulnerable position, where their ability to exercise choice might be limited and their ability to exercise their rights or represent their own interests might be at risk. Good advocacy would enable individuals or groups of people to have their interests given the same consideration as those of other citizens.