Our Helpline & the advice it should never give, according to Maeve Binchy

Have you called our Helpline?  Did you know Arthritis Ireland has a Helpline?

Arthritis Ireland advocate Maeve Binchy

Maeve Binchy

Our Helpline was started in 2009 and has gone from strength to strength.  We started with a core group of 10 volunteers and we now have 27 dedicated volunteers. This is a confidential service and all of our volunteers are living with arthritis.  We are proud to have such a wide range of ages on our Helpline – our youngest volunteer is 23 and our oldest is ……70+ and of course all the ages in between!  All our volunteers are living with different types of arthritis and while they do not consider themselves to be experts, they certainly have the experience of living with arthritis and all the challenges that that brings on a daily basis.  Our volunteers are continuously updating themselves on all matters arthritis and keeping themselves informed of any new developments.

So who is our Helpline for?

Our Helpline is for anyone living with arthritis, whether newly diagnosed or living with arthritis for many years.

Perhaps you have read something in the paper which you would like to know more about?

Maybe you are completely up to date with your arthritis but would like some emotional support around living with the condition?

Maybe you are caring for someone with arthritis and would like some support with that?

Perhaps you are looking for information on courses and events being run by Arthritis Ireland in your area?

The late Maeve Binchy was a great advocate of our Helpline.  As part of the Helpline launch in 2009 she wrote about the 10 things you should never say to someone with arthritis.  Here are some of the things she wrote – we guarantee not to use these phrases on the Helpline!

  1. ‘Cheer up, nobody ever died of Arthritis’
  2. ‘It is just a sign of old age, it will come to us all’
  3. ‘A touch of Arthritis’
  4. ‘The walking stick is very aging – I wouldn’t use it if I was you’

Maeve finished her article by saying ‘Don’t ever say, sadly, how tragic it is that nothing has been done for poor arthritis sufferers.  Plenty is being done.  Just contact Arthritis Ireland Helpline.  Then you will have an idea of how much is happening and you can be a true and informed friend rather than a false and frightening one.’

We are here to listen and to help so please give our Helpline a call on locall 1890 252 846.

Fiona Keegan is Arthritis Ireland’s Helpline Coordinator.

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