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Roma Health Project

Tipperary Roma Health Project (06/ 2022- 06/2025)

Statement of Purpose

The Tipperary Roma Health Project works towards achieving equality of health outcomes for the Roma community through building health literacy; improving access and/or developing health service pathways; supporting access to health information and addressing adverse social determinants of health faced by the Roma community.

Underpinning Values

The Tipperary Roma Health Project is motivated by and aligned with a frame of five interconnected core values that reflect our community development ethos:

  • Human Rights, Equality & Anti-Discrimination
  • Social Justice
  • Participation
  • Collectivity
  • Community Empowerment

Tipperary Roma Health Project Aims:

  1. Enhance Roma access to health information and health services.
  2. Strengthen intercultural approaches among health service providers, and other key services.
  3. Identify, enable and support action to address negative social determinants for Roma health, in order to improve their health status.
  4. Support Roma engagement to identify and address their needs and to ensure broader community inclusion, by: building Roma capacity and securing their participation and voice; and supporting group formation and peer-led approaches to Roma issues.
  5. Ensure Project capacity to monitor and review progress, and ensure the ongoing sustainability of the Project.

Roma population in Co. Tipperary

There are 315 Roma people in Co. Tipperary (01/2024)  

193 people are engaged with Tipperary Roma Health Project and using service.                                  

There were 150 Roma People who left Co. Tipperary since 04/2021- since the project started. It gives a total of 465 Roma people identified through the project (01/2024).  

Breakdown of the nationalities of Roma people in Co. Tipperary (located by TRHP- 01/2024)  

Nationalities in Co.  Tipperary Hungarian Slovak Swedish Czech Romanian Ukrainian  Bulgarian  Turkish  
 Numbers:  17  71  14  31  33  13 81 

Also, the table identifies the languages spoken by Roma people in Co. Tipperary. To add, most of the Roma people also speak various dialects of Romani language.  

Roma Health Project Video

A Needs Assessment of the Situation of Roma Living in County Tipperary.

Report of the Tipperary Roma Health and Accommodation Pilot Project.


Tipperary Roma Health Project workers:

Sandra Lakaciauskaite – Roma Health Project Co-ordinator (Languages spoken: Lithuanian, Russian, English)

Helga Lakatosova – Roma Health Project Support Worker (Languages spoken: Slovak, Hungarian, Polish, Roma, English)

Magdalena Pavlovska – Roma Health Project Support Worker (Languages spoken: Swedish, Roma, English)


Roma is the largest minority group in Europe, it is estimated that there are 10 to 12 million Roma across Europe. Roma share a common lineage, their migration over the centuries to many different countries, have produced numerous distinct communities as particular groups established roots in various countries and regions.

Gypsies, Roma, Travellers: An Animated History

Background and context

The Roma community in Ireland consists of persons from Roma communities (ethnic minority group) from a range of European countries including Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Republic (Czechia). Latest census 2023 recorded 16,000+ Roma in Ireland.

Roma population in 2023:

  • South East Ireland: 800 persons in Wexford; 700 persons in Waterford; approx. 140 persons in Carlow;
  • Mid-West Ireland: 180-200 persons in Clare;
  • 274 Roma people in Co. Tipperary.

Roma community experience discrimination, isolation, stress and fear. Adult members of Roma community have a low level of literacy skills and knowledge of the English language. The people have a very limited access to health information and health services. Roma population have a high rates of unemployment, income poverty and child poverty. Roma families live in unsafe, overcrowded and in unsuitable accommodation with a lack of security of tenure.

National policy and frameworks:

National Traveller and Roma Inclusion Strategy, 2017- 2021.

Roma in Ireland a National Needs Assessment

Second National Intercultural Health Strategy 2018-2023

Healthy Ireland. A framework for improved health and wellbeing 2013-2025.

Healthy Ireland Strategic Action Plan 2021-2025

EU policy and Frameworks

EU Roma Strategic Framework for Equality, Inclusion and Participation 2020-2030.

The 10 Common Basic Principles on Roma Inclusion

Roma Health Project in Co. Tipperary 2021 (Pilot)

HSE Social Inclusion Services: Mid West and South East come together with Youth Work Ireland Tipperary to respond to the health needs of Roma in county Tipperary as one Local Authority Area. To ensure that Roma people can have equal outcomes can necessitate putting different levels of support in place.

Roma Health Project’s Aims were:

  • To outreach and engage with Roma in Tipperary using a community development approach;
  • To map the population, age groups, their nationalities and languages spoken and situations;
  • To identify their health and information needs in relation to Covid-19
  • To provide Covid-19 information and
  • Undertake housing, social welfare, employment advocacy and health advocacy support work such as supporting medical card applications which will assist in supporting Roma engagement.

A Guide to Establishing a Roma Health Project