Traveller Men’s Health Programme

IMG_4612The findings from the All Ireland Traveller Health Status Study (2010), state that the life expectancy gap between Traveller men and settled men has widened to 15 years.  Traveller men have six times higher suicide rates than the settled population and heart disease and stroke account for 25% of deaths.  There is also a 15% higher rate of smoking and 66.3% of Travellers said illicit drug use is a problem.  It is impossible to divorce this inequality in health outcome from the discrimination and inequality experienced more generally by the Traveller community.

In order to address these findings, OTM expanded its health work in 2012 by launching the Traveller Men’s Health Programme.  Its work includes:

  • Hosting the Midlands Traveller Men’s Health Network
  • Rolling out and developing the OTM Horse Project
  • Initiating and facilitating a Traveller Men’s Shed Project in Offaly
  • Developing and facilitating sports and leisure opportunities for Traveller men in Offaly
  • Improving engagement of Traveller men with existing health services in Offaly
  • Improving awareness of mental health issues with Traveller men in Offaly.
  • Exploring the issues in relation to Traveller men’s employment/unemployment

Addressing the isolation experienced by older Traveller men in Offaly