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Three Limerick communities aim to be Pride of Place 2018

Pride of Place 2018 judging in Kilmeedy, Co Limerick with Tom Dowling, Chairman of the Pride of Place Committee and Alison Dowling. Picture: Keith Wiseman

Three Limerick communities aim to be Pride of Place 2018

Three Limerick finalists will be hoping to be the proudest of them all this weekend as the annual All-Ireland Pride of Place awards grand final takes place.

Limerick City and County Council selected Kilmeedy Community Development GroupLimerick Civic Trust and the Children’s Grief Centre as their three entries for this year’s competition.

They are in the following categories:

  • 0-300 population category – Kilmeedy Community Development Group
  • Creative Place Initiative – Limerick Civic Trust
  • Communities Reaching Out Initiative – Children’s Grief Centre

The competition is based on communities demonstrating directly to the judges their pride in their place by the oral presentation, exhibitions of community activities and culture and a tour of the area highlighting the aspects of which they are particularly proud.

Judging took place in July when the judges were given a presentation about what they do and how they are helping to help their communities visited each of the three finalists.

The IPB Pride of Place 2018 awards are presented in association with Co-operation Ireland and 2018 marks the 16th anniversary of the competition, which has enjoyed tremendous success and continues to grow in terms of prestige and popularity.

The purpose of the competition is to acknowledge the work being done every day by communities all over the island of Ireland.

The Gala Awards of All-Ireland Pride of Place 2018 takes place in Cork City Hall on Saturday 17 November 2018.

Kilmeedy Community Development Group (0-300 population category)

Kilmeedy is a small village in the parish of Feenagh Kilmeedy, West Limerick with a community spirit that burns bright. Through Kilmeedy Community Development Group CLG (established in 1996), and its army of volunteers, our mission is to:

  • Develop the resources and people in our community
  • Fight rural decline
  • Foster social cohesion and inclusion and
  • Preserve our local culture and narrative

The Group has delivered a variety of successful projects and social enterprises benefiting all age groups and sectors of our population, to include education and training initiatives, social housing, built and natural heritage, recreational amenities, sporting and youth activities and a strong heritage and cultural programme. Our Tidy Towns group, with the participation of village residents, delivers a colourful and welcoming place in which everyone has a strong sense of community pride.

Our achievements include the delivery of two Local Training Initiatives (Horticulture QQI Level 4 and Childcare and Healthcare QQI Level 5) at Áras Íde Community Resource Centre. Our refurbished Garda Barracks in the heart of the village hosts the Glenquin Connello Fás Scheme, with over 50 participants serving a wide area of West Limerick; our community office serving the Development Group and the local Heritage Group. The Butterfly Preschool and Kilmeedy Breakfast and After School Club operates from the other side of the Barracks with the beautiful Phoenix Project Intergenerational Garden to the rear, an innovative amenity available to everyone in the community.

Kilmeedy Community Shop & Café is due to be opened in November 2018 and will act as a community hub following our successful application for 50% LEADER funding.

Preserving and nurturing our cultural narrative is an integral part of Kilmeedy village life. Monthly Rambling Houses during the winter months provide a platform for music, dance and storytelling for all age groups. Our local Scór group recently won the All Ireland Scór Léiriú Final in Sligo.

Our sporting culture is strong with both soccer (Feenagh Kilmeedy AFC) and Gaelic games (Feenagh Kilmeedy GAA). Our local Community Games Group has a record of high achievements at the national level and provides a welcome outlet for the youth of the area. Along with the Active Age Group, we have recently launched KYDC (Kilmeedy Development Youth Club).

Kilmeedy’s motto is to harness our resources for investment in our community. Working in partnership with Limerick City and County Council and West Limerick Resources we live in a beautiful and vibrant place – of which we are all extremely proud.

Limerick Civic Trust (Creative Place Initiative)

The Limerick Civic Trust was founded in 1982 and is a voluntary organisation, which undertakes projects for the general improvement of Limerick’s environment.

For over three decades, the Limerick Civic Trust has played a key role in Limerick’s heritage and economic development as well as the social and environmental vitality of the region.  It has over 150 restoration projects completed and are currently working on the following projects around the city and county which include:  restoration of St. Munchin’s Church with the aim to open it as a museum; the upkeep and maintenance of 14 graveyards; King’s Island Community Garden; the development of a number of derelict sites; Street a week – Limerick Civic Trust undertake to clean one street in Limerick every week and maintenance of the cities canal and river walks.

Under the Community Employment Scheme, Limerick Civic Trust manages over 70 participants or trainees at any one time.  In 2017, the CE workers dedicated over 50,000 man-hours on making places more attractive, enjoyable and distinctive.  They are an army of heroes who have delivered on so many projects and the people in the community benefit from them enjoy them and value them.

pride of place 2018

Children’s Grief Centre (Communities Reaching Out Initiative)

The Children’s Grief Centre is located in Limerick City and has a long history of providing support services to children and young people who are affected by loss through bereavement, separation or divorce. Founded in 2009, the Centre is conveniently situated in the heart of the city, on the grounds of Westbourne Convent, giving easy access for children and families to attend.

The Centre is committed to enhancing the overall well-being of grieving children in Limerick and to this effect provides one to one support sessions to children and young people between the ages of 4 and 18 who are affected by the loss. These sessions are provided by a team of experienced and professionally trained Volunteers.

Since its establishment, this one of a kind organisation has supported almost 1,100 children and their families, allowing them the opportunity to explore their feelings around loss. The Children’s Grief Centre also serves the wider Limerick Community by means of workshops and information sessions.

pride of place 2018

Children’s Grief Centre Pride of Place 2018 judging with Tom and Allison Dowling. Picture: Keith Wiseman

In 2017, the centre’s founder Sr Helen Culhane was named Limerick Person of the Year.  She received the top honour for her dedication and commitment to providing grieving children and young people with a place and space where they are given the opportunity to examine feelings associated with loss and learn that they are not alone.

For more information on Pride of Place 2018, go here

For more stories on Pride of Place, go here

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.