Challenges of Old Age
Ireland is ageing and more and more people are living longer and better lives. However, a minority of older people (probably one in five of the 535,000 people aged 65 and over) require some form of support and almost 5% live in some form of residential care.
Most older people prefer to live, and to die, in their own home but many face challenges to their independence due to illness, disability, lack of family and community supports or an inability to access public services that meet their needs. Some people face progressive decline in their ability to make and community decisions as a condition, such as dementia, develops over time.
In circumstances where people have to depend on others there is a need to ensure that the rights, freedoms, and dignity of the older person can be heard and facilitated, independently of family, service provider or systems interests.
Sage has its origins in the response of the HSE to the Leas Cross Nursing Home scandal in 2005. It is now being developed under the governance of Third Age, with funding from the HSE and Atlantic Philanthropies. Sage is working to expand access to support and advocacy services in all care settings and wherever ageing poses a challenge for individuals. We are committed to addressing individual and systemic issues and to the development of quality standards for support and advocacy for older people through public consultation.