Letterkenny woman Mary Sweeney has been honoured for her work with the most vulnerable people in the community, by being named Home Instead’s 2022 Ulster CAREGiver of the Year.

Care company Home Instead which cares for 198 clients in Donegal, runs the annual carer recognition awards to reflect the incredible work that carers do right across the country, helping to keep older people safe and well in their own homes and communities.

Mary, who has worked for Home Instead for four years, was nominated for the award by Alison Hegarty, General Manager of Home Instead in Donegal.

Alison Hegarty, said: “Mary is devoted to giving her clients the best care possible. She has great empathy and compassion, and is a kind, warm-hearted, gentle person with a wealth of knowledge and experience.”

Awards Judge, Molly Carpenter, Director of Workforce at Home Instead Inc., and author of Confidence to Care, said:

“The testimonials and feedback from Mary’s colleagues, fellow CAREGivers and, perhaps most importantly, her clients show just important a member of the team and the community she is. We were delighted to recognise her outstanding contribution by awarding her the Ulster CAREGiver of the Year prize.”

Mary’s nomination was supported by her colleagues at Home Instead Donegal who described her as “one of the most reliable and professional CAREGivers”, someone who is a valuable and trusted colleague and whose “compassion and sensitivity to others enables clients to feel at ease and reassured at all times.”

Mary, who is also a qualified Alzheimer’s carer, currently provides care to 15 clients in County Donegal, including Letterkenny, Ballybofey and surrounding areas

There are currently more than 5,000 people waiting for home support packages in Ireland, including 172 in Donegal. Home Instead is actively recruiting CAREGivers throughout the country to help ensure that this demand can continue to be met.