My name is Breege Kilcullen and my late husband Padraic who himself was an MS sufferer had heard of an MS Centre in Trim Co Meath he decided to go there for treatment. Just as important as the therapies were the peer support and the opportunity to have a chat over a cuppa!
Over a period of time, Padraic and I travelled regularly to Trim to use the services available. Padraic felt better after availing of the Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy but the return journey from Sligo minimised the benefits of the therapies. He discussed this with Mary, the manager of the North East Therapy Centre in Trim, and she suggested that he go back to Sligo and set up the same services there.
On the way home that evening, Padraic said to me “Well, that’s what we’ll have to do! It might be too late for me, but more people will benefit from it”. This was typical of Padraic’s attitude, for example, when people asked “Do you ever think ‘Why me?’ he would say ‘Why not me?’”. Padraic put the suggestion to the Yeats Multiple Sclerosis Self Help Group and they decided that some of the group would have a look at the centre in Meath. It was agreed that the group would start fundraising to build the badly needed Multiple Sclerosis North West Therapy Centre in Sligo.
The fundraising started! The Yeats Multiple Sclerosis Self Help Group were relentless in their work and it felt like every single person in the North West got behind them and gave their full support. The Multiple Sclerosis Self Help Group approached the North Western Health Board (HSE) for support and presented their ‘case’ – outlining the necessity for a service in the region for persons diagnosed with MS. The Health Board leased the old gate lodge on the grounds of St John’s Hospital to the group, gave them a financial commitment and seconded the first manager of the Centre from its staff.
The building was refurbished and in 1993, after a lot of hard work and community support, the Multiple Sclerosis North West Therapy Centre was born. In July of 1993 President Mary Robinson officially opened the centre. Padraic was very proud of the centre where he used the services at every opportunity and found it very beneficial. However, Padraic’s prediction was correct and the centre was a little too late for him as he passed away in March 1995 leaving the legacy of the North West Multiple Sclerosis Therapy Centre behind him. I now have a sister and brother attending the centre.
Please donate to MS North West Therapy Centre Sligo, and support us in our efforts