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Age Friendly Ireland

Programme: National

WHO Theme: Community Support And Health Services

Health & Wellbeing Theme: Physical Activity

Funding Stream: HSE

Resources Required: Paid Staff

Cost: 5000-10000


CarePALs aims to empower those working in day and residential care settings to lead suitable physical activities with older people who live in or visit their setting. This means that physical activity sessions can be delivered by staff and therefore included as part of the daily or weekly routine without cost to the care setting. CarePALs initiative was originally designed for face to face delivery to staff in care settings. During Covid-19 it was adapted to an on line delivery of 4 x 2 hour sessions delivered via zoom. From the start of 2020 to date 79 people who work in care settings have taken part in this initiative and there are more courses scheduled to take place during September and October. The main goals of CarePALs is to increase physical activity levels of people who attend or reside in care or residential settings and to raise awareness of the benefits of physical activity among staff and those who are in their care.

Aim of Initiative

Who is it aimed at

The initiative is aimed at staff or volunteers working in day or residential care settings, to empower them to lead physical activity sessions with those in their care

Steps critical to success

  1. That staff of care settings are released from work to attend the training
  2. There are no further restrictions that may restrict this type of training to be delivered to care staff
  3. That funding continues to be provided

Challenges in Planning / Delivery

  1. Ongoing challenges of Covid-19 restrictions regarding staff and residents of care settings
  2. The typical challenges of on line delivery as opposed to face to face where paperwork is completed on site rather than depending on participants to send via email
  3. Cyber attack on HSE communications which can affect our ability to raise awareness and recruit participants

Outcomes / Benefits

  1. Enhanced health of older people in care
  2. Staff of care settings enabled to lead Health Enhancing Physical Activity (HEPA) Sessions for older people with varied levels of ability on a regular basis
  3. Increased awareness of social, psychological and physical benefits of physical activity for older people of all ages and abilities

Evaluation / Report:
not complete

Sue Guildea //