Cratloe volunteer Mary Slattery has been named the 2020 winner of the Clare Older People’s Volunteer of the Year Award.
An award ceremony was live streamed from Áras Contae an Chláir in Ennis on Tuesday, 17th November, 2020, via Clare County Council’s YouTube channel.
The function was hosted by the Clare Older People’s Council and supported by Clare County Council.
Nineteen community volunteers from all over Clare were nominated for this year’s award. Pat Dowling, Chief Executive, Clare County Council, virtually presented Mary Slattery with an engraved glass trophy as well as a Clare Gift Card.
Mary has been an active member of her community for over 48 years and is currently a member of Cratloe Community Council. She attends their meetings and involves herself with all activities to improve the life of the community. She has been a member of the Irish Countrywomen’s Association (ICA) since 1967 and has held all offices. Mary has provided catering for events, organised by groups such as the GAA, the Church and the annual Milford Hospice fundraiser. She is a Eucharistic Minister and visits nursing homes. She takes older people to Ennis for hospital appointments and visits their homes to help organise medication, which she collects from pharmacies if required. During the Covid-19 restrictions she has collected groceries and medication for people.
Addressing those attending virtually, the Mayor of Clare, Cllr Mary Howard, spoke of the importance of voluntary work to local communities and of how such work contributes to the resolution of challenges faced by those communities.
The keynote speaker, Dr Harry Barry, spoke via video link about resilience as we age, and about recognising and dealing with stress. He also gave tips on how we can improve our mental wellbeing.
Pat Dowling, Chief Executive, Clare County Council, congratulated the winner and all the nominees, who received a framed certificate in recognition of having been nominated by their communities. Nominees will also receive a framed letter from President Michael D Higgins, which was read out during the ceremony.
Mr Dowling also praised the organisers of the event, Clare Older People’s Council, and acknowledged the resilience demonstrated by the older community during the Covid-19 pandemic as well as the leadership role they have played in following Government guidelines.