Health Board: Upcoming conferences, talks, campaigns and events

1) The Winterval Festival in Waterford is holding an evening for children with autism spectrum disorder on Thursday, December 12th. The Autism Friendly & Sensory Evening is designed and adapted for children with special needs to meet Santa in a calm environment, with staff briefed on each group in advance to ensure they are aware of what to expect from the experience. The 8th annual Winterval festival runs until December 23rd. See

2) The Irish Osteoporosis Society is hosting a screening of two Christmas classics based on the books by Raymond Briggs - The Snowman (27 mins) & The Snowman and the Snowdog (24 mins). The screenings will be held in Christ Church Taney, Dundrum, Dublin 14 on Tuesday, December 17th at 6pm, with proceeds going to funding the ongoing work of the society in the treatment and prevention of osteoporosis. Tickets are €6 each, €10 for a couple, and €18 for a family. See

3) Firecracker Films are researching abusive sibling relationships among young people in the UK amd Ireland for a potential documentary and are interested in hearing people's experiences. They say all conversations will be confidential, with no obligation to take part in any filming. Contact: Phone +4420 38337 7874

4) Researchers from the School of Psychology at NUI Galway are currently recruiting participants from ages 16-35 in the Galway area to participate in a new psychology therapy study being trialed for individuals who are in the first five years of a diagnosis of psychosis. Early psychosis, which refers to a range of mental health difficulties often associated with experiences of hallucinations or delusions, can result in significant difficulties with social and occupational functioning. The CReST-R study (Cognitive Remediation and Social Recovery in Early Psychosis Study) focuses on helping to improve everyday functioning in young people living with psychosis. The study will involve weekly one-to-one therapy sessions over the course of 10 weeks, with an assessment before and after completion of therapy. This trial is part of a Health Research Board funded programme entitled YOULEAD (Youth Mental Health Research Leadership) as part of a collaboration between mental health researchers at NUI Galway, UCD and RCSI, and health service providers, including the HSE and Jigsaw. To participate in the study and for more information contact Emma Frawley,, 086 8527199. For more information about YOULEAD, see

Damian Cullen

Damian Cullen

Damian Cullen is Health & Family Editor of The Irish Times