Family Carers Ireland, representing Ireland’s 200,000 family carers, is launching its 10th Carers of the Year Awards 2016 this morning to celebrate the enormous contribution and loving care provided by family carers and young carers (under 18).
To mark the 10th anniversary, four young carers will be chosen regionally as Ireland’s Young Carers of the Year 2016. Formerly, one young carer nationally was presented.
With awareness of young family carers increasing, the awards saw a 400 per cent increase in the number of nominations for young carers last year.
“Launching our tenth Carers of the Year Awards is a very special milestone. Family carers provide high levels of care in the home to their loved ones, including older people, those terminally ill and with disabilities. This care is provided with love and we want to celebrate family carers and young carers across Ireland with these awards” said Catherine Cox, Family Carers Ireland.
“So many people give their time and often sacrifice many aspects of their lives to provide care to loved ones, often over many years. We are calling on the public to nominate these dedicated carers for the Carers of the Year Awards.”
Officially launching today’s awards were broadcasters and patrons of Family Carers Ireland, Mary Kennedy and Marty Whelan.
They were joined by family carers from a variety of caring backgrounds. Des Coffey (51) cares for his daughter Danielle (23) who is a person with Down Syndrome. Jennifer Carroll, last year’s Carer of the Year, cares full-time for her two children Alex (8) and Ava (3) who were born with Osteogenesis Imperfecta – a condition which causes bones to break easily.
Sam Norris (18), former Young Carer of the Year, helps his single mum of five, Antoinette, care for his sister Demi (19) who has Cohen’s Syndrome and brother Adam (10), who is a person with Autism.
Nomination forms are available from Family Carers Ireland Resource Centres nationwide. Nominations can also be made online at www.familycarers.ie. Closing date for entries is Friday, September 16th and the tenth Carers of the Year Awards will be presented in Dublin in November.