Nora Owen, Paul Williams, Charlie McGettigan – Leitrim’s Health is Wealth – Faces & Places: Episode 197

This week on Faces & Places we’re casting our minds back to the recent Leitrim’s Health is Wealth event held in the Landmark Hotel in February 2020, we hear from some of the speakers and participants including Nora Owen, Paul Williams and Charlie McGettigan.

We start with event organisers Valerie Cogan and Hubert McHugh as they remind us of the concept of the event and the reason for gathering almost 1,000 people together to hear from phenomenal speakers about their own battles and experiences with their mental and physical health.

The event Masters of Ceremonies, Crime Journalist and Ballinamore native Paul Williams talks about returning to this extraordinary event boasting some phenomenal speakers on the issue of mental health, especially in rural Ireland.

Former Minister for Justice Nora Owen discusses the impact her husband, Brian’s, dementia had on his quality of life of the entire family and herself, Brian’s main carer up to recent times. She speaks about the signs of dementia including loss of memory, confusion, forgetfulness and hesitancy in speech. She also discusses the process of making the decision to place Brian in full time residential care.

The musical entertainment for the evening, Charlie McGettigan tells us about why he continues to be part of the evening on an annual basis with bereavement, depression and mental health on the agenda for the evening.

Norman Hamilton, former moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, joins Breifne to discuss why he travelled across the country to join Hubert and help spread the message of the importance of positive mental health in our communities.

Terence Boyle, Vice Chairman of Leitrim GAA, discusses the impact the open discussion of mental health issue has on it’s clubs and members in the 23 GAA clubs across all communities and geographical areas in the county.


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