Monaghan remains one of only a few counties in Ireland that does not have dedicated respite centres for children and adults with special needs and the statement of education was changed only last year. Currently, Monaghan children have to travel to Cavan for their education. Living with this reality has prompted one Monaghan mother to organise a public forum in the Four Seasons Hotel in Monaghan tonight from 7:30pm.
'Hannah' says she and many others like her are "exhausted" by the "relentless" care of their children with special needs who are missing out on so much because they have no dedicated respite centre or school. Any family who has a child with special educational needs is invited to come along to the speaking event tonight, where they will be given a platform to talk about their experiences. All local politicians have also been invited. It is hoped if politicians here the daily struggles of these Monaghan families, they will work harder to provide the respite care and special schools so desperately needed in Monaghan.
'Hannah' told Northern Sound what the aim of tonight's community event is: "It is a public forum, a community event, when we ask anyone, any family, parent of a child or adult, sibling or carer to come and voice what our lives and struggles are like on a daily basis and we want to get word out to our politicians to put pressure onto the government to get our own stand-alone respite house in Monaghan."