THE weather may not have been co-operating but there was no dampening the spirits of those who came to witness the official opening of Aras Bhride, Co Leitrim’s first purpose built sheltered housing project, in the village of Drumkeerin.
Not only is this a major first for the county, it is also the first venture into sheltered housing by Cluainin Voluntary Housing Association and its successful completion will hopefully be emulated at other sites across the country.
The joyful celebrations last Friday were a far cry from the anger and disappointment expressed three years ago when the HSE announced its intention to close St Brigid’s Hostel in the village, a facility which had been operated for a number of years by Drumkeerin Care of the Elderly.
Despite the setback, members of the Committee began their ambitious plans to have the existing hostel replaced with purpose built sheltered housing units. After bringing successful voluntary housing providers, Cluainin Voluntary Housing Association, on board, Drumkeerin Care of the Elderly, along with staff of the existing St Brigid’s service, witnessed the turning of the sod on the new site nearly two years ago by Minister for Housing, Michael Finneran.
The Minister was, once again, on hand for one of his final official duties, cutting the ribbon on the fabulous Aras Bhride facility last week.
See this week’s issue for further details.