Press release, for immediate release today Thursday, 6th December, 2018.
Following a joint review by the NCBI and the HSE (CHO 6), it has been confirmed today (Wednesday 5th December 2018) that additional funding is being made available by the HSE to ensure that the NCBI office in Marine House will remain open for the foreseeable future. Having together reviewed the provision of services to people with sight loss in Dún Laoghaire, ensuring the continued operation of the office in Marine House means people with vision impairment in Dun Laoghaire will continue to be able to access our valued services in their locality.
According to Chris White the CEO of the NCBI “The collaboration with the HSE demonstrates how disability organisations, the HSE and service users can all benefit from constructive dialogue which improves services. I acknowledge that the last few weeks have been upsetting for service users in Dún Laoghaire as the future of the office was unclear. It was never our intention to cause any distress to service users but instead we merely wanted to utilise our resources in a way which afforded the greatest level of access to people with sight loss across the entirety of south Dublin and Kildare. The additional funding leaves the NCBI in the fortunate position of having two centres based on the south side of the city, resulting in an enhanced service offering.”
In addition, NCBI will be opening a new purpose-built and fully accessible centre in Tallaght Cross, in mid-January 2019. This €800,000 investment funded solely by the NCBI through fundraised income thanks to the public’s generosity, will see the NCBI provide a greater level of service to people with sight loss across south Dublin and neighbouring counties.
White added “Our new Tallaght centre will act as our centre of excellence on the south side for all our staff and service delivery, and reflects our commitment to providing world-class services to the vision-impaired community in Ireland. Service users of our Dún Laoghaire centre will see no dilution in the services or the peer support groups currently operating, and it is the board’s and executive’s intention to see additional services being run through this centre on a weekly basis.”
“Ultimately NCBI is committed to delivering and improving services for people with sight loss and this announcement recognises that NCBI is a listening organisation and one that is more than willing to consider the views of our community and represent those views to the HSE and other Government agencies.” concluded White.
NCBI delivers a huge range of services to 8,000 people with sight loss in Ireland every year and we rely very heavily on the public’s support to be able to do so. We will continue to rely heavily on this support to keep all of our centres across the country open in 2019, as we only receive 69% of the funding required to run our services from the HSE.
For further comment, please contact
Kevin Kelly, Head of Policy, Advocacy & Campaigns, 0867811744 or by email to [email protected]