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'Standing up for their generation': These older people are getting tattoos to fight ageism

Alone, the charity that supports older people at home, is aiming to raise €10,000 during the event.

FIVE OLDER PEOPLE in Dublin are set to get tattoos tomorrow in a bid to raise money for charity and to fight ageism. 

Alone, the charity that supports older people at home, has teamed up with Dublin tattoo company The Ink Factor to run the ‘Bucket Lister’ project. 

For the past four weeks, the charity has released videos introducing each individual, who are all Alone tenants, which outline their motivations for getting inked. 

One tenant who is taking part in the event, 66-year-old Tom McArdle, became homeless a number of years ago after his relationship of almost 30 years ended.

“To cut a long story short, I ended up homeless. I had this idea that, well, if life is going to be like this I might as well be back on the drink,” McArdle said in his video. 

However, he said that “faith or destiny stepped in” and he managed to get into a detox programme. During this time he also made contact with Alone, who secured a home for him. 

ALONEIreland / YouTube

“I do have to say that only for them I do not know where I would be now because my time in rehabilitation was coming to an end. Looking back I don’t know where I would have been … I’d safely say I would probably have been back drinking,” he said. 

Only for Alone and the chance they gave me for a new life. The person that I am now is a totally different person to the one that you would have seen a little over four years ago. 

A nature-lover, McArdle has made the decision to get a tattoo of a bee tomorrow. 

“I’m curious. It’s curiousity to see how it will turn out. The pain, that doesn’t bother me. Pain is just a part of life anyway. I’m looking forward to having it done …but somewhere inconspicuous,” he said.

‘They’re still doing something new’ 

Explaining the idea behind the event, Alone CEO Sean Moynihan said that part of the reason the charity chose to host this event was to “show that even though people are older … they’re still doing something new, still learning something new”. 

He said the project helps fight ageism and has given the participants the opportunity to express themselves creatively with their choice of tattoo. 

In some ways, these people are standing up for their generation and saying we’re still here, we’re still participating and we’re happy to do new things and learn new things. 

ALONEIreland / YouTube

Open to the public, the event takes place at 1pm at The Ink Factory on Wellington Quay tomorrow.

The Ink Factory has called on the public to support the project and help raise €10,000, which will go directly to Alone’s services. 

“We have to support those older people in our community, especially those who are going through some hardships or difficult times,” Moynihan said. 

Online donations to support the project can be made here

Those who have concerns about their wellbeing or the wellbeing of other older people in the community can contact Alone at 01 679 1032 or via its website

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