Lord Mayor helps celebrate a lifetime of service to vulnerable people

Residents, politicians and housing professionals today recognised dedication and commitment that has improved the quality of housing and care for older people in north Belfast. Kathleen Hale, retiring Resident Supervisor at Newington Housing Association’s Camberwell Court has helped some of the most vulnerable people in the area secure much-needed support and comfortable accommodation.

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In 2000, the Newington-area resident was an active supporter of the new sheltered housing scheme and four years later secured a senior position with responsibility over 50 frail or elderly residents who reside in the scheme’s self-contained apartments at any one time.

Belfast Lord Mayor Cllr Nicola Mallon was among those to hail Kathleen’s contribution and said:

“Comfortable and safe homes that help provide dignity and a quality of life is something that we should all expect in our later years. Kathleen has been instrumental in making that a reality and has worked tirelessly to provide a voice for some of the most vulnerable people in this area.

 “Only too often, we hear of the isolation and loneliness suffered by our elderly community. But as the people of Camberwell Court will tell you, that simply isn’t possible when Kathleen is nearby. Her spirit and enthusiasm for the residents is legendary and she makes everyone in her presence feel valued and included. Kathleen has been a treasure for north Belfast and while she heads towards well-earned official retirement, I know she’ll remain in close contact with the people who hold her in such high regard here.”

Gary Dugan, Chief Executive of Newington Housing Association paid tribute to Kathleen and said:

“Kathleen’s humour, concern and informal manner has made Camberwell Court a vibrant and welcoming home where residents are her friends not tenants and where exceptional care is the norm. Her compassion and generosity in times of need are exemplary, even when not on duty she was regularly attends her friends’ – our tenants – bedsides when they are very ill.

 “She was the ideal person to deliver our vision for this scheme and it simply would not have been as successful without Kathleen’s influence, energy and enthusiasm. She a selfless, humble and dedicated person who puts others before herself and often her family. All our staff members will miss having Kathleen around but we are exceptionally proud to celebrate her commitment to the residents of Camberwell Court and to the community. We wish her every happiness in her retirement.”

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