SAOI Network

In old Irish culture “Saoí” was the term used to describe an old person with wisdom to impart

In old Irish culture older people were honoured and revered in their communities for the knowledge and wisdom they had accumulated from their long experiences of life. “Saoí” was the term used to describe an old person, with wisdom to impart and so it was against this background that IRD Duhallow called its support network for older people The Duhallow Saoí Network.

Duhallow has an above average population of older people partly because we have had depopulation and out-migration of young people but also because people in Duhallow live longer.

Dr. Albert E. Casey an eminent Irish American pathologist from San Francisco discovered that the people of Sliabh Luachra have a longer lifespan than any other in Ireland if not in the world, and the men had a longer lifespan than the women, this despite having a diet that consisted of plenty milk, fat bacon, eggs, and the men folk drinking many pints of porter. In a paper to the learned International Academy of Pathology in San Francisco Dr Casey concluded that the reason for their long lifespan was peace of mind with no stress, helped by fresh air and moreover the closeness of the bogs, which are noted for the preservative properties.

So the challenge for the statutory agencies and communities is to work together to offer the best care both medical and social to our aging population. The SAOI Network represents 19 actively retired groups throughout the Duhallow Region. It acts as an advocate for older people in Duhallow.

The SAOI network plays an important role promotes the participation of older people in local decision making processes as well as encouraging and supporting them to avail of the various supports available. It helps to promote and value the role and contribution of older people in Duhallow through coordinating the efforts of locally established groups to develop regional responses to their various needs.

IRD Duhallow is focused on responding to the educational challenge of an ageing population in Duhallow and in providing the Third Age with pathways to new learning opportunities. Life Long Learning changes the lives of many older people enabling them to gain new insights and experiences and by improving self confidence and motivation to learn. The SAOI Network frequently organises information seminars, training programmes and workshops on topical issues of interest for older people which are all aimed at promoting the social inclusion of older people in Duhallow. One of these training courses which was run with the support of the LEADER Programme was reminiscence training. This facilitation training delivered by Reminiscence Ireland helped older people to recall the past. Recalling the past helps older people keep in touch with places, people and events that shaped their lives as well as passing on their knowledge of the past to younger generations. The training enabled these group leaders to develop more reminiscence groups and activity within their own communities.

The following are some examples of seminars, training programmes and workshops organised by the SAOI Network:

  • Art
  • Physical Education
  • Personal Development
  • Preparing for Retirement Workshop
  • Photography & Photo Editing
  • Crochet
  • Yoga
  • Pitch & Putt Classes
  • Information Seminar on Hip and Knee Replacement
  • Information Seminar on Online Banking
  • Creative Banking

If your group is interested in joining the SAOI Network please contact Louise on 029-60633.

Actively Retired Groups in the Duhallow Region

  • Freemount Thursday Club
  • Millstreet Actively Retired Association
  • Boherbue Actively Retired Association
  • Tullylease
  • Rockchapel Moving at Heart
  • Meelin Actively Retired Association
  • Kiskeam
  • Castlemagner Sinsir
  • Kanturk Actively Retired Association
  • Ballydesmond Daycare
  • Banteer Wednesday Club
  • Dromtarriffe Actively Retired Association
  • Kilshannig Actively Retired Association
  • Donoughmore Actively Retired Association
  • Millstreet Gramphone Club
  • Cluid Housing Newmarket
  • Kanturk Open Door Womens Group
  • Sliabh Luachra Actively Retired Association
  • Glash/Foyle

For more information on any of the above groups please contact Louise on 029-60633.