The late John Hanlon RIP was conscious of the need for Residential Respite Care for children with disabilities in Co. Louth and had prior to his death shared his vision with family and friends and negotiated with local agencies as to how best to provide such a facility. A one acre site was acquired as a gift from Monica McDermott, late of Rampark, Jenkinstown, Dundalk, Co Louth and his vision was distilled and in collaboration with the HSE and other agencies plans were put in place and financial provision made by him for the centre to be established.
Aware of the immense possibilities of the dream held by John, his family sought to broaden his vision and seek the support of the wider community. To this end the Maria Goretti Foundation was formed and exists to further the cause of children with disabilities and life limiting conditions. The Foundation has at its heart the care and dignity of children and their families at the Respite Centre at Lordship and seeks to be a protagonist of such children and their families.
The Foundation is a registered charity and is committed to the support of children with disabilities. The centre at Lordship, Co. Louth is currently a purpose built eight bed-roomed facility that operates under the auspices of the HSE and is currently managed by Rehab Care. The Foundation seeks to further the cause of children with disabilities and is interested in research in this field. Building on the experience of the children and families that use the centre we are committed to responding creatively to their needs into the future.
The Maria Goretti Foundation seeks to continue to develop the facility at Lordship and is committed to improve and extend capacity of the centre. It will work with other agencies to ensure that the service provided to the children who use it and their families, is of the highest quality.
The foundation is currently exploring a number of projects that will further enhance the centre including the following:
- Roofing for the play area so that it can be used all year round.
- Additional children’s rooms.
- Provision of a sensory garden.