Latest Laois Event: Cuisle Centre Open Day to highlight range of vital community services

Latest Laois Event: Cuisle Centre Open Day to highlight range of vital community services

Significant 78% surge in demand for Cuisle cancer support services post-Covid

The Cuisle Cancer Support Centre in Portlaoise is holding an Open Day on Saturday, September 9th. It runs at the distinctive Cuisle Centre premises on the Block Road, Portlaoise (opposite the Midlands Regional Hospital) from 11am to 2pm. All are welcome.

The Open Day is to show people what exactly happens at the Cuisle Centre, and to outline the extensive range of services, supports and therapies, available at no cost to the users, who are coping with or recovering from cancer, and the help that’s available to their carers and families.

While there has been a sharp increase in demand for the Cuisle Centre services post-Covid, the activities and supports they provide are entirely free of charge to the users. The average monthly increase in the numbers of those seeking care at Cuisle is up by 78% compared to the pre-Covid uptake of services.

The Cuisle Centre provides emotional support to those affected by cancer including the people who care for them, from the time of diagnosis, throughout their cancer journey. This caring support takes place in a confidential, professional, and non-judgemental environment and is available to everyone who needs it. Cuisle in Portlaoise caters for a broad catchment and is run by a voluntary Board of Directors and managed day-to-day by four full-time employees and a team of therapists and counsellors.

Cuisle’s clear objectives are to ensure nobody in the community feels alone while living with cancer and to provide a comprehensive range of emotional supports, survivorship, and rehabilitation services to those living with, through and beyond cancer treatment.

“Since the start of this year we have seen a steady increase in the demand for our services. New referrals, which include newly diagnosed cancer patients and family members, are at 294   compared to 165 for the same period last year. In 2022 we provided 5,280 support services in total, and so far, this year we have provided 4,400 services,” points out Cuisle Centre Manager, Mary Ruddy.

“These services include Nurse Support, Counselling, Manual Lymphatic Drainage, Relaxation Therapies, Chair Yoga, Aqua Aerobics, Pilates, Mindfulness for Men, Men’s Support Group, Walking Group, Creative Arts Group, Art Classes, and Mindfulness for Menopause. We also provide one to one psychological support for children, in addition to group support for children affected by a cancer diagnosis or a cancer bereavement,” she outlined.

Chairperson of the Cuisle Board, Niall Kavanagh adds: “The Cuisle Cancer Support centre is a fantastic community resource that provides much needed help at no cost to those who require it.

To quote a person who availed of the services after a breast cancer diagnosis, once she came in the door, ‘it was like the lights being switched back on’ for her again.  

At our open day we encourage the public to come in and have a look around and learn about what we do and meet those who are behind the services here at Cuisle in person.”

The Cuisle Centre is most grateful for and welcomes all donations, and fundraising events to support its vital array of services. The Cuisle Centre Open Day is on Saturday, September 9th from 11am to 2pm, and all are welcome to attend.