For 25 years Lakeland Community Care (LCC) has been to the forefront of providing domiciliary care, day care and flexi-care in rural Fermanagh.

And they are the only locally based charitable organisation which provides domiciliary care in the county.

Since 1994 we have formulated, implemented and managed services aimed at meeting the health and wellbeing of older people and minimising social isolation. The staff are locally based and have a knowledge of the area and the needs of the community.

CEO Pat McGurn has worked with the organisation since 2004 and has been involved in many of LCC’s achievements such as the new Healthy Living Centre in Belcoo, winning the Western Health and Social Care Trust tender, winning a number of community awards and most recently the visit of His Royal Highness Prince Edward the Earl of Wessex to help celebrate the 25th anniversary.

“Our ethos is based on person centred care and focuses on matching care to the needs of people to maintain them in their own homes and in the community for as long as possible,” explained Pat.

“As part of the Fermanagh Older People’s Network we engage in a multi-agency discussion to look at needs and service issues. Our staff meet regularly with the users of our services and through established networks of other agencies and community groups. Our staff also visit the homes of potential service users identified by local communities and other agencies to encourage them to avail of services and maintain an active life.”

With staff of over 250, Pat knows the vital role they play, paying tribute to all those who play a vital role within the organisation. He said: “You are all so special in your own way and it is important that you know that your contribution is appreciated and respected in the community.

“All the managers, Care Co-ordinators of our Omagh, Enniskillen and Belcoo offices have given me tremendous support over the years.

“All our staff in their various roles, community development, training and ancillary work and all our carers who do such a worthwhile job. You are very special to us.

“Our day centre senior carers and assistants who keep our five day centres a special place for our valued clients and all our voluntary driver who look after our clients with dignity and respect.”

Pat also praised the people who make the most out of the Healthy Living Centre and “give life” to the building and hopes the support for the community and the good relations it fosters will continue for a long time to come.

“From Mothers and Toddlers group, exercise class, dancing class, yoga, IT classes, Irish Language class, Women as One, Friday Club and the Men’s Shed, it gives me enormous joy that this project has been worthwhile.”

Pat also acknowledges the work of the Board of Directors and Trustees who sowed the original “seeds of success” and who entrust him with the overall management of LCC.

And with 25 years over them, there is no sign of slowing down as they continue to provide top class care in the community and Pat is looking forward to what the future holds in store.

“The future is bright and is forever evolving,” added Pat.