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Limavady Volunteer Centre with Brendan Gormley Pharmacies

Limavady – Driving new Partnerships 

Limavady Volunteer Centre (LVC) is a member of a bigger umbrella organisation Limavady Community Development Initiative (LCDI) which is located in the Limavady Neighbourhood Renewal Area. LVC manages a volunteer workforce of 70+ pathway volunteers who support all the LCDI projects and other voluntary groups. All the projects are delivered to clients who are among the most vulnerable in our society such children, older people, and adults with learning/physical disabilities.  

LVC have recently completed a Level Two Building the Community-Pharmacy Partnership Programme with a local pharmacist, Brendan Gormley. The need for a BCPP project came after LVC co-ordinated the strategic Community covid-19 response in the Limavady Legacy council, and they found that single men living alone, local women of menopausal age, local parents of pre-school children, adults living with a disability and adults living with an addiction were groups with the lowest levels of health literacy. The aim of the project is to enable LVC to work in a collaborative partnership with relevant stakeholders and address health inequalities in the local area, by developing both individual and community health and wellbeing literacy.  

Brendan Gormley pharmacies are long time collaborators with the Programme and have participated in many Projects.  They recognise that a safe warm and cosy environment where you feel welcome offers the opportunity to share and experience true community and make lasting connections to ease everyone’s path. 

LVC and Brendan worked together to develop and plan a year-long programme aimed at developing relationships between the community and the pharmacy, enabling them to recognise and address health inequalities within their communities. The pharmacist delivered sessions on ‘The role of the Pharmacist,’ flus and colds, healthy eating, and checks. The group greatly benefited from these sessions and one participant commented ‘I didn’t know I could call with the pharmacist, and he would support me if I wasn’t feeling the best’ and another participant stated that ‘new information about what the pharmacist offers will mean that I don’t have to wait to see the doctor.’  

NISRA (Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency) data which suggests that there is a causation link between dispensing in local pharmacies and deprivation. Government statistics has revealed that Limavady is Northern Ireland’s 10th most deprived area. In 2019/20 there were 8.8 million items dispensed to patients living in the most deprived quintile (this included Limavady Neighbourhood Renewal Area), whereas 5.9 million were dispensed to those residing in the least deprived quintile. A particular topic that the group were keen to explore was financial management, debt management and benefits checks. To address this Limavady Advice Services came along to deliver an interactive informative session.  

The group have established an identity of their own now and the friendships forged will last beyond the length of the Programme and relationships will continue to develop going forward and that is the true legacy of this type of work.  Intimacy and trust hold the key to powerfully effective group work. 


Participant quote 

‘I wasn’t aware I was entitled to community transport.  I will definitely be making use of it in the future.’