Mincéirí Port Láirge runs a number of community health initiatives with funding from the Health Service Executive CHO 5 Traveller Health Unit
- Waterford Traveller Community Health Project
- Waterford Traveller Men’s Health Project
- Dungarvan Traveller Community Health Project
- Kilbarry Men’s Shed
Mincéirí Port Láirge community health work supports a volume of health issues, specifically targeting cardiovascular and mental health initiatives in the community. Traveller community health workers carry out these initiatives in their own communities, giving them an enhanced reach and authenticity. Some of the health promotion programmes carried out this year with men and women across the county include:
- Weight management programmes
- Exercise and walking groups, motivation, companionship and fresh air for improved mental health
- Cardiovascular and strength training programmes
- Wellbeing sessions, relaxation, mindfulness and yoga
- Work on women’s health with HSE clinical staff
- HSE reflective practice training for community health workers
- Better, safer healthcare, quality standards in S39 projects training
- Hand hygiene and risk assessment training
- Health Literacy Group; CHWs have progressed to QQI level 2 in reading and writing
- Women’s slow crafting group, encouraging mindfulness, sharing problems in a confidential setting, heritage activities.
- Traveller Culture Art Project, working with Exchange House to create a prototype mural for future development.
- Supporting individual cases on a confidential basis with finding appropriate solutions for health or family support issues, involves advocacy and signposting.
- Cook-it! Programme delivery; healthy eating and recipes, evening company and activities.
- Artistic cake decorating and tier stacking, including household budgeting and money saving tips.
- Marathon and fun run training, including cardiovascular fitness and weight management, alongside a confidential opportunity for sharing and stress relief.
- Swimming lessons, water safety and lifesaving, especially important for men who bring horses to bodies of water.
- Mile challenge swim, for more advanced swimmers, good for stress management and achieving goals, fostering pride by raising money for charity.
- 1-2-1 mental health service signposting.
- Providing a listening ear for men under stress.
- Signposting and referrals to Pieta House suicide prevention service.
- Specialised 1-1 gym programmes including cardiovascular and strength training.
- Kilbarry Men’s Shed; workshop activities, providing relaxation, a break from the home, chance to socialise and work as a team, management skills.
- Mobile Farrier Stand; shoeing horses at greatly reduced price due to collective buying and farrier skills training. Also provides an opportunity for teamwork and co-operation between the men, and better management of finances.
- Child development and health; information on child development for young parents, peer support and networking for young parents.
- Vaccination information.
- Liaison with substance misuse services.
- CHW Kathleen Delaney qualified as a make-up artist to provide extra interest in health promotion activities for young women.
- CHWs provided community feedback for the provision of a new harm reduction needle exchange at Boots chemist with a new Melanotan needle kit. The new kit is being promoted to young women in the community who may be using injectable tanning substances, along with information sessions on the dangers of Melanotan and the dangers of re-using needles. Similar harm reduction work is taking place on slimming tablets.