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Pieta confirms all therapy centres will remain open following financial review



There will be no downgrading of Pieta centres, as the charity announced that it will be employing additional therapists and redeploying admin staff who had been at risk of redundancy.

Pieta, Ireland’s national suicide and self-harm prevention charity, has confirmed that its 15 centres plus four outreach centres will not be downgraded or closed following an internal financial and operational review.

Pieta moved its delivery of therapy for those experiencing suicidal ideation, self-harm and those bereaved by suicide to over the phone in March following COVID-19 restrictions, and also continues to support those in immediate crisis through the 24/7 crisis helpline.

The postponement, due to COVID-19, of Pieta’s flagship fundraiser Darkness into Light, proudly supported by Electric Ireland, left the charity with a very significant funding gap. Pieta relies on the public for 80 percent of its funding to ensure it can provide its national mental health service free of charge. The people of Ireland responded to the challenging financial situation with generous support for the ‘Sunrise’ appeal which, along with a number of other initiatives, raised an incredible €6 million and significant awareness for Pieta.

These funds, together with the Government wage subsidy scheme, increased support from the HSE and a 30 percent pay cut to staff from April to June of this year, means that Pieta is in an improved financial position.

Key points arising from the review include that all 15 Pieta centres, plus its four outreach centres, are to remain open. There will be no downgrading of any centres. Centre hours will be restored back up to January 2020 levels. From next month, Pieta will engage in a phased reopening of centres for staff and will resume face-to-face counselling services from September, in accordance with Government guidelines post-COVID, 14 additional ‘full-time equivalent’ therapists will be employed, eight will support face-to-face counselling and six will join the helpline team to meet the increased demand, 10 full-time equivalent Centre Manager roles and 33 Clinical Support roles, that were identified at risk of redundancy in April 2020, will now be redeployed. From July 1, pay for all staff will be restored to pre-COVID levels, while the HSE has agreed to provide Pieta with additional funding of €114,608 per month, commencing in July. This funding must be spent on supporting the provision of 300 hours per week of therapy to high risk clients. Pieta will also be engaging with Government and the HSE on a sustainable funding model for the delivery of services.

“I want to express my gratitude to the Pieta team and to our supporters across the country for their help, support and patience over recent weeks," speaking about the Financial Review, Pieta CEO, Elaine Austin, said.

"Due to the overwhelming generosity and kindness of the people of Ireland, and increased support from the HSE and our corporate partnerships, Pieta is now in a more secure financial position, and we can confirm that our vital services will continue to be delivered across all of our Centres nationwide. The support has been unparalleled and very humbling. We know people need our service now more than ever in these times of crisis, and it is important that people know that we are here and they are not alone.”

For more information or to donate, please visit

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GAA stars set to gather for A Night With Legends

By Sean Moriarty Over 1,500 people are expected to attend Fossa GAA Club’s ‘A Night With Legends’ on Tuesday night. GAA royalty will grace the INEC stage as part of […]




By Sean Moriarty

Over 1,500 people are expected to attend Fossa GAA Club’s ‘A Night With Legends’ on Tuesday night.

GAA royalty will grace the INEC stage as part of an ambitious fundraiser by the club.

The event will be styled on RTÉ’s popular pre All-Ireland Final show ‘Up for the Match’ where footballing legends will tell some of their life stories in between music and songs.

It will be hosted by author and raconteur Billy Keane and horseracing photographer Pat Healy. The event is one of the key fundraisers for the expanding Fossa GAA Club.

Coming just days before Kerry’s All-Ireland semi-final with Dublin, ‘A Night With Legends’ will also serve as a light-hearted preview to the important game.

Kerry greats like Pat Spillane, Mike Frank Russell, Paul Galvin and Eamon Fitzmaurice will be joined on stage by Dublin hero Bernard Brogan Sr. Killarney greats Colm ‘Gooch’ Cooper and Ambrose O’Donovan will also be there.

“This is not going to be a boring night, it is going to be filled with fun and banter, music and craic,” Fossa GAA chairman, Dermot Clifford, told the Killarney Advertiser.

Several raffle and auction prizes are up for grabs on the night too, the most unusual being a chance to bid on a racing greyhound, donated by the Murphy Family from Brosna.

The fundraiser has already raised €10,000 thanks to a recent auction organised by Paul Nagle. The local rally star sold one of his world championship helmets for €25,000 with the balance going to Recovery Haven in Tralee.

Limited tickets are still available at a cost of €25 per person or groups can buy a table of 12 for €250.

Ticket enquires:

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Salvias are valuable plants for any gardener

By Debby Looney, gardening expert One plant which I think is a super addition to borders and pots is the salvia. There are many to choose from, but there are […]




By Debby Looney, gardening expert

One plant which I think is a super addition to borders and pots is the salvia. There are many to choose from, but there are two broad differences, one is the bedding salvia, with its spikes of fire-engine-red flowers – though they come in cream and purple also.

These have become less popular with gardeners over the years, as slugs eat them with relish. I have found the product ‘Grazers’, a spray, excellent as a slug repellent. As an aside, ‘Grazers’ also do a rabbit, deer, lily beetle and caterpillar repellent, all of which are organically certified and perfectly safe to use. They are also quite effective products. Secondly, everyone knows the herb salvia, or sage which goes perfect with chicken, roast squash or parma ham, it is a flavour of autumn.

However, there are over 500 salvias to choose from, and happily, nurseries are taking notice of them. This year a notable addition to most garden centre stock is the hybrid Wish collection. There are three; ‘Love and Wishes’, ‘Ember’s Wish’ and ‘Wendy’s Wish’. Being the greedy gardener I am, I planted all three, and have been rewarded by large bushy plants with masses of colour. I planted them in a free draining, sunny part of the garden, where they have plenty of space. The plants themselves reach about 80cm, flower spikes being at least 20cm long in colours pink, aubergine and orange.

Another beauty is S. Amistad, which every garden with a flower border should have. They grow up to 1.2m, with lush dark green foliage, topped by dark blue flowers. The calyces (the bit the flower comes out of!) are almost black, giving it a fantastically dramatic look. S. nemerosa is a hardy variety, used in Irish gardens for years, as it spreads happily keeping weeds at bay. ‘New Dimension Blue’ is a lovely variety, with rich blue flower spikes. S. nemerosa does not grow that tall, about 30cm. It is also one of the few salvias which will tolerate heavy soil and a lot of winter rain.

S. roemeriana ‘Hot Trumpets’ is also a low growing spreading salvia, about 30cm, with the brightest red flower spikes I have yet to see rivalled! It grows well in dappled shade, adding great splashes of colour. Another red is S. x jamensis ‘Hot Lips’. It is an evergreen perennial, which loves full sun. It grows to about 50cm, and has flowers from April through to the first frosts. The flowers are bicoloured red and white, like little flags. ‘Killer Cranberry’ is another beauty with magenta flowers.

All salvias are attractive to bees and other pollinators, and as such are valuable plants for any gardener. They look great grouped with other perennials, as well as in pots or on their own in beds.

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