Cross-Border Conference on Addiction to help Newry Cuan Mhuire

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Thursday, January 26th, 2012
A new Cross-Border Conference on Addiction has recently been launched by Sr Consilio. Speaking to Newry Times Sr. Consilio, Director of Cuan Mhuire NI said, “It is an opportunity to help deliver new facilities and supports to meet increased demands for services in Northern Ireland, and in Border counties. A ‘New’ Cuan Mhuire Regional Addiction Support Centre based in Newry will be the largest resource of its kind. It will support those in need of services and also Government policies and strategies.” Speaking in advance of the major Conference on Cross Border Cooperation in Addiction, Sr Consilio continued, “At a time of real pressures on public funding for addiction-related services on both sides of the Border, and when people are finding it increasingly hard to make voluntary contributions, practical Cross-Border cooperation is vital. Cooperation can improve access to rehabilitative services for those in urgent need, especially in the form of interventions focused on ‘at-risk’ groups, such as young people. Cooperation can help deliver the most cost-effective service provision, at a time when value for money is so important.” Cuan Mhuire was established in Newry in 1984. Its doors remained open through the difficult years of the 1980’s and early 1990’s. It provides a wholly inclusive service to individuals and families, right across the Province. “Thousands have been through the Cuan Mhuire Programme and are now living independent and fulfilled lives with their families as well as in the work place and making a great contribution to their communities” said Sr. Consilio. In 2010 Sr. Consilio received an MBE in recognition of her services to vulnerable communities in Northern Ireland. In the same year, Cuan Mhuire received international Accreditation and ISO Certification. Today, a ‘New’ Cuan Mhuire is being developed, building on, and extending, the services provided from the ‘old’ Cuan Mhuire on the Armagh Road, which provided a home, and refuge, for thousands over the last quarter of a century. Speaking at the site of the ‘New’ Cuan Mhuire Regional Centre, which is nearing completion in Newry, Sr. Consilio stated, “This will be the largest ever facility of its kind in the Island of Ireland, which is specifically focused on sharing across communities and national borders. It will be an example to the EU of what can be achieved by communities working closely together.” Sr. Consilio also talked of her hopes for the ‘New’ Cuan Mhuire. “This major facility is a measure of Cuan Mhuire’s respect and affection for the ordinary people here in the north that we serve and who have supported us down the years. It will extend existing, as well developing new and specialised, services of the highest quality and in beautiful new facilities. Our mission is to all individuals, without exception and to their families who are so often distraught and distressed. Our focus is to help all who are trying to deal with addiction and related difficulties, notably homelessness and its impact on Health status and on Drug and Alcohol misuse in Northern Ireland and the Border counties.” The Director of Cuan Mhuire added, “In practical terms, it will mean fewer residents from Northern Ireland will have to travel to avail of specialised Detox services. It will also provide much needed new capacity which will deliver services bench-marked against the very best international standards. In this way it will complement, and bring greater flexibility, to the individual and distinctive national strategies being developed on both sides of the border.”
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