Mount Merrion Friendship Club

merrion friendship club 1

Up The Rise in Mount Merrion, tucked behind the church, is the meeting place for the Merrion Friendship Club. It is a social day care group, unique in the area, for retired locals who are still lively yet not mobile enough for the Active Retirement groups.

Day Care Manager Mary Bartley spoke to NewsFour about the club. “The club was established about twenty years ago. We have about 53 clients and a waiting list as our service is in great demand.” She has been working with the elderly for 19 years and in the Mount Merrion Community Centre for nine.

Mary loves working with the elderly and finds it really rewarding. Her role involves organising the three meetings each week; Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. The groups meet each morning at 11am, have tea and coffee, involve themselves in an activity such as music exercises, quizzes, the daily papers, talks, discussions, bingo and plenty of laughter. Then they’re fed a lunch of soup, a main course, tea or coffee and dessert. They will always remember someone’s birthday which they celebrate with cake. Apart from Mary the club is run by volunteers.

“The main purpose of the group is to help those living alone to socialise and keep up with local news. Being a member here for our seniors means having fun, company and social interaction,” explains Mary. They have two outings a year; one in the summer and a Christmas party in the Stillorgan Park Hotel. The two ladies’ groups run on Wednesday and Friday and a men-only lunch club runs on a Thursday.

To contact Mary Bartley, phone 2884411, Wednesday to Friday, 9.00 a.m. to 3.00 p.m. Outside these hours, an answering service is available.

Pictured above: Emily Kirwan, Irene Wilson, Peggy Lyons, Bridy Doris, Olive Gallagher, Bernie Flannery, Vera Scully, Aoife Vaughan, Edna McLaughlin, Maura Dixon, Frances Dowling, Mary Bartley, Mary O’Neill, Mary Cleary, Ann Roberts, Eileen Reinhardt, Mary Nolan.

By Emma Dwyer