Seanad debates

Wednesday, 24 November 2021

An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business


10:30 am

Photo of Maria ByrneMaria Byrne (Fine Gael)

I often give out about what is happening at University Hospital Limerick but there was a very good occasion yesterday, which was the retirement of Bonnie the therapy dog. She has worked with the paediatric unit in the Children's Ark over many years and brought great joy to the children. She has been involved in calming the children and playing with them. This is a programme that should be rolled out across many hospitals. Therapy dogs bring great benefit to children, especially at a time of need when they are in hospital and not feeling well. They have done wonderful work. Bonnie certainly deserves a great retirement. Rolling out the programme in other hospitals is something we should look at.

At the An Post Book Awards Keith Earls was awarded best sports book for Fight or Flight: My Life, My Choices. I congratulate him. He is in the public eye quite a bit and came onto the pitch last weekend for the big win against Argentina. A sports star who goes public and speaks about mental health issues is due a great compliment. It is a book I suggest people read. It is a very good read. It speaks about his whole life history. He started in Moyross and went on to play for Ireland, the Lions, Munster and Young Munster. It is a great tribute to a sports star and a young family man to be able to speak about issues he has had along the way with mental health. It encourages all of us to speak about the issue.


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