Page 52 - Support Magazine Winter 2017
P. 52


                                                                BY PHILIP MEAGHER

                                                               Branch meeting - Glenroyal Hotel, Maynooth, 26th June
        You will not have seen much in
        SUPPORT from the Kildare branch in  our group and told us of the          ‘Thank you’ Mary for your time and
        many years but we are still here. The  opportunities for patients in    for providing so much valuable
        last eight months have seen Kildare  competitive and participation sports.  information on the night, and at very
        reinvent itself and in so doing we have  He emphasised the importance of the  short notice.
        seen active attendance and          hope offered to many by seeing the    At every meeting this year we have
        participation at meetings greatly   achievements at events like the     been very encouraged to see good
        increased. This has been achieved by  Transplant Games.                 numbers attending and we were
        being aware that the best type of     In Athy, Mike Kelly from Donor    particularly delighted to see that
        support comes from shared           House, provided his audience with a  bringing the meeting to different
        experience and working to deliver it  very interesting presentation on the  locations, within the county, allows
        effectively to the IKA’s Kildare    psychological aspects of kidney failure,  many people the opportunity to
        members.                            during dialysis and pre/post transplant  engage with branch officers and
           Information Evenings were regularly  from the patients perspective. Mike  fellow members at a location closer to
        arranged and held at different      was open to answering questions     their home. We intend to continue
        locations within the county. So far we  during the presentation which allowed  this practice for our branch meetings
        have held get-togethers in Naas,    all attendees to engage with the    in 2018.
        Newbridge, Maynooth and Athy but    discussion. A lot of useful information  Thanks to all members, new and
        intend to make it to other towns in  was imparted on the night. Thanks  old, and everyone who attended and
        the coming year. It was very        Mike – we all enjoyed your          contributed to the success of the
        encouraging that these get-togethers  presentation and the discussion that  meetings with their questions and
        were increasingly well-attended as  fed from it. We look forward to your  discussions around their own
        time went on.                       future visit to discuss things from the  experiences as patients.
           Another reason for the increased  family/carers point of view.
        participation by members was the      In Naas – Mary Byrne, one of the  ORGAN DONOR AWARENESS WEEK
        decision to include in all meetings  renal dietitians at the Mater Hospital,  Local TD and Chairman of the Fine
        some information important to kidney  kindly spent an evening with us and  Gael Parliamentary Party, Martin
        patients such as diet, nutrition,   provided attendees a useful insight  Heydon, alongside the Kildare Ladies
        dermatology, IKA sports for         into the importance of diet for kidney  Gaelic Football team launched Kildare
        transplanted patients and the       patients. Again lots of opportunity  IKA’s Organ Donor Awareness Week in
        psychological aspects of kidney related  was there to ask questions and Mary  Hawkfield GAA Club, Newbridge this
        illness.                            very patiently answered all our     year.
           We invited expert speakers and   queries.
        there were lots of opportunities for
        members and attendees to increase
        their knowledge whilst getting
        support and advice from fellow
        members and patients. An important
        message that was often repeated this
        year was for patients to ‘know your
        numbers’, i.e. know your vital kidney-
        related blood numbers and
        understand what they mean for you,
        asking your medics/doctors to clarify
        them for you, when you need to.

           In Newbridge Colin White joined                Attendees at IKA Counsellor, Mike Kelly’s Presentation, Athy – July 31st

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