Cork native, Mary Brady, was recently awarded with the Irish Red Cross '2011 Carer of the Year' award for providing 40 years of full time care for five of her children.
Mrs Brady, who has six children, was nominated for the award by her neighbour Noreen O’Neill. Ms O’Neill described her neighbour as "an inspiration to all our community" saying that Mary is "always smiling and laughing and does lots of community work”.
The award ceremony at Cork City’s Gresham Metropole hotel was attended by Kathleen Lynch TD, Minister of State, Department of Health and Department of Justice, Equality & Defence with responsibility for Disability, Older People, Equality & Mental Health. Minister Lynch congratulated Mary stating that her work as a carer was truly exceptional “Mary Brady has shown that by providing such a great amount of care and love people who face greater difficulties can lead fulfilled and happy lives”.
The Irish Red Cross Carer of The Year Award is an annual award open to all carers in Ireland. The award acknowledges the dedication of informal carers at home and in the community who provide an essential service to the vulnerable and display true humanitarian values.
On accepting her award Mrs Brady thanked her friends, neighbours, and the children that she cares for in particular saying ‘thank you Sean, Catherine, Evelyn, James and Thomas for being the unique people that you are. You have brought so much love and joy to us and made life-long caring so rewarding for your carers’.
The Irish Red Cross publishes a Helping You to Care Handbook and provides training for Carers, throughout the country; in an 8 week course which consists of modules such as mobility, adapting the home and home hygiene. Both the handbook and the course are designed to give the carer the knowledge and skills they need to ensure that the person being cared for achieves the best quality of life. Anyone interested in the Carer Training course or handbook should contact the Irish Red Cross on 01 6424600 or visit www.redcross.ie.