St. Gabriel’s Children’s Centre Mungret will open this summer after a two- year wait.
The respite service will provide around-the-clock care for children with physical disabilities and complex needs.
Minister of State for Disability Anne Rabbitte announced on Tuesday that the centre is to receive €1.1m per year in government funding as a fulfilment of a commitment made in Budget 2021.
CEO of St. Gabriel’s Maire O’Leary said “Parents have been having a really tough time, especially with COVID-19.”
“Families are very anxious that they have no sort of back-up service if they got sick and they wouldn’t be able to care for their child, I think there was a sense of relief from families that the funding has come through.”
The six-bed unit was built two years ago for €2.9 million, but was unable to open due to a lack of funds for staffing.
“We are recruiting already so will be employing staff nurse’s health care assistants cleaners. We already have a manager in the house in place at the house so we hope to open some time in the early summer, perhaps even May. ”Ms. O’ Leary said.
Minster Rabbitte added that €5m in funding has been secured to open nine respite houses across the country with St Gabriel’s being the first to open.
Speaking about covid-19 precautions Ms. O’Leary said that the unit is built with infection control in mind..