Caoimhe Bennett, from Omagh, a sixth-year student at Loreto Grammar School cares for her mother who is blind and lives with diabetes. On a daily basis Caoimhe administers medication, completes housework and other tasks such as banking and paying bills whilst studying for school.

Every day Caoimhe tests her mother’s blood sugars, administers medication and organises her daily needs. She prepares all meals for the family and tends to all correspondence. Caoimhe also assists her mother in her role as secretary for a local charity EYEspeak.

To make a further difference outside the home, Caoimhe is involved with Barnardo’s Young Carers Council and has produced a short film and booklet highlighting young carers and what schools can do to assist them. In order to overcome obstacles, Caoimhe has recruited the help of the Rehab team in Drumcoo House who assist with her mother. They take her on walks and trips to the leisure centre if a time comes when Caoimhe cannot. This was a learning curve for Caoimhe who learned that it is okay to ask for help.

“Caoimhe is a remarkable young lady who is constantly striving to help others. Her commitment to her academia, her family and her local community is awe-inspiring,” said Mary Gavin, head of Pastoral Care. “Caoimhe is the personification of perseverance, triumphing daily over her own personal challenges. She has never sought recognition and in her unassuming and gentle manner, we would never guess the responsibilities that she undertakes.”

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