Monday, December 11, 2017

Families

THE FIVE-YEAR PLAN

A few weeks ago a group of friends were out and somebody mentioned the 5-year plan. It brought back memories of a few years ago. During my days in nursing when we were newly trained graduates, we all had a five -year plan. Our aims included getting experience in our relevant fields, getting some finance together, travelling the world and, if we met a significant other in that time, that was all the better. Life went on and we went our separate ways, but we still stayed in contact...

SIBLINGS: LONG-LASTING TIES

Siblings of adults with intellectual disabilities (ID) are an untapped resource in supporting and advocating for their siblings. At the same time many of these siblings that are playing large roles in the lives of their brothers or sisters with disabilities also would benefit from recognition and support for these roles. Generally siblings are the most long-lasting relationships, as siblings often grow up in the same households and outlive their parents...

ACTIVITY AUGUST

Nothing is more important to the development of the child with autism (ASD) than a strong family and an extended circle of support from siblings, relatives, neighbours and friends. While specific teaching, therapies and interventions impact on positive personal development, there will be no greater influence on the progress of a child with autism than to be absorbed into the everyday life of the family and community. This was borne out in summer 2013 by the introduction of the successful pilot project ‘Activity August’...

HOW FAMILIES HAVE INFLUENCED ME—AND HOW FAMILIES CAN INFLUENCE AND SUPPORT EACH OTHER

I spoke recently at the Inclusion Ireland AGM (18 June 2013), when Siobhán Kane had asked me to talk about how families have influenced me and the importance of supporting each other. Stephen Kealy, Editor of Frontline caught me over coffee and asked me to write up my presentation for Frontline — so here it is!...

PARENTING A TEENAGER WITH AUTISM —what Stephen is teaching me!

Parenting is a tricky subject at the best of times, with constant ups and downs. The toddler and teenage years seem to be particular highlights for testing of parenting skills! Stephen (who has a rare chromosomal disorder and autism spectrum disorder .ASD) is the eldest of my three children, so I haven’t done parenting a teenager before. There is...

‘FAMILY VOICES’: Life in Ireland for Families of People with Intellectual Disability— Working as co-researchers on a National Study

I am writing this article with Dr Darren Chadwick who is Marie Curie Fellow in the NIID and the lead researcher on this collaborative project, and one of my co-researchers. I first got involved with the National Institute for Intellectual Disability (NIID) in 2007 when it was directed by Professor Patricia O’Brien. I was asked to join the advisory...

Contract Families: A new future for family and community living in Ireland

Background The time has come to move away from traditional segregated models of respite and residential care for people with disabilities. The Brothers of Charity Galway and Ability West have been lucky to have had the opportunity to pilot a new family and community service thanks to Pobal’s (Department of Justice and Law Reform) Enhanced Disability Scheme. The evaluation of...

Working all the live-long day: Parenting and employment

In recent decades, more and more mothers are entering the work force. This societal change has given rise to a surge of research aimed at measuring how working outside the home affects women’s lives. In this column, we will share some research findings on the complex relationship between employment and parenting. Whether you work outside the home or not,...

Parents’ Perspective

My name is Jean Spain, I have just joined the Editorial Board of Frontline—and having read the magazine since it began I was very honoured to be asked to join such a dedicated group of people. I am a parent of a person with an intellectual disability and like many parents have had to fight for any services my...

A PARENT’S UNDERSTANDING OF THE DISABILITY BILL—HOW IT WILL IMPROVE TO NOT IMPROVE SERVICES

First, I have to say that I am not a lawyer, and reading pieces of legislation usually sends me to sleep. But I feel very strongly about this legislation, because of the awful situations some people with disabilities have to live with, and the unjust barriers that prevent people living as equal citizens of this very wealthy country. I have...