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Daughters of Charity TESS Creative Hub to develop a socially engaging environment

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TESS Creative Hub launched at Tait Enterprise Centre on Davis Street, Limerick. Pictured left to right are service user Jimmy Murphy, Claire Fitzgerald, Shannon Commercial Properties, Natalia Jackson, CEO Daughters of Charity Disability Support Service (front) and service user Michael Tinney. Picture: Farhan Saeed/ilovelimerick

Daughters of Charity launch new TESS Creative Hub to develop a socially engaging environment

By I Love Limerick Correspondent Tara Byrne

The Daughters of Charity Service Limerick (DOC) launched a new creative space called TESS Creative Hub, on Wednesday, May 12.

TESS Creative Hub

Pictured are Gerard Macauliffe, Centre Manager with service users Michael Tinney and Jimmy Murphy. Picture: Farhan Saeed/ilovelimerick

They have taken over Unit 1 in the Tait Enterprise Centre on Davis Street and transformed it into a purpose-built space. It will house an ongoing, creative programme of events which will include dance, drama, visual arts, music, yoga, Tai Chi, movie nights and book clubs.

Natalia Jackson, CEO of Daughters of Charity Disability Support Service, was there for the launch and said, “We are here today to open the TESS Creative Hub in Limerick City and just to give thanks to Shannon Commercial Properties who have helped us with this venture. This is going to have a reach not only to people we support in Limerick but also through technology and through zoom, it’s for people we support in North Tipperary, Offaly and our Dublin Services. We are really looking forward to welcoming everyone to this space, thank you.”

Originally, Unit 1 was used as a start-up premise for small businesses. Budding entrepreneurs in collaboration with Shannon Commercial Properties could rent this space to facilitate and grow their new business.

TESS Creative Hub

Pictured left to right are Claire Fitzgerald, Shannon Commercial Properties, Natalia Jackson, CEO Daughters of Charity Disability Support Service service users Michael Tinney and Jimmy Murphy and Donal Sherlock, Manager Daughters of Charity. Picture: Farhan Saeed/ilovelimerick

Clare Fitzgerald, Property Executive for Shannon Commercial Properties commented, “We operate a social inclusion programme and I put the proposal by DOC through the Board of Shannon Commercial Properties, who then approved it. We have a number of social inclusion projects that we do throughout the region. We have Limerick Suicide Watch here in the Tait as well, then we have one in Shannon in the Men’s Shed. We give them space and they look after it and do what they need to do with it at a fee of ten euros for the year.”

The TESS Creative Hub will now facilitate creativity through a number of performing arts and crafts. It has been

designed to accommodate all the people DOC support who are interested in exploring different ways of expression. Living with COVID has not deterred people from learning and discovering their creative talents, the Creative Hub allows DOC to have a physical presence as well as a video conferencing service that enables them to provide remote learning, develop a socially engaging environment and hold events.

DOC Manager Donal Sherlock said, “We aim to continue to engage with local education authorities, arts practitioners, from a vast background, and design programmes that are of interest, beneficial and fun for the people we support to participate in. These include online education tutorials, weekly creative movement/dance classes, yoga and drama classes, arts and crafts, film, visual arts and music.”

He added, “As a result of COVID it was important to us to be creative in maintaining services for the people we support and provide a bridge to integrating with the wider community. We have very talented and proactive people in the organisation, both individuals we support and staff. We have seen the benefits that our menu of activities has on the well-being of all involved. The Creative Hub is our response to the Covid-19 Pandemic and a state of the art studio dedicated to creation, collaboration, integration and social inclusion.”

The Daughters of Charity Service for Persons with Intellectual Disability recognises that each person possesses a unique dignity and potential. They are committed to the development of the potential of each person with an intellectual disability in an atmosphere characterised by love, respect and creativity. Through this, they enable each person with an intellectual disability within the service to take his/her place in society and in turn to contribute in a meaningful way. They give priority to people with the greatest need and advocate the promotion of justice for persons with intellectual disability.

Donal said, “We are looking forward to welcoming and encouraging all the individuals we support to use this facility as part of their daily service. The Creative Hub will provide a stepping stone through a range of activities to support and enhance their lives. We are looking forward to welcoming all centres affiliated with the Daughters of Charity Support Service. We are grateful to be in a position to develop and provide creative opportunities to share with all who engage with us in the Creative Hub. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Shannon Commercial Properties and the HSE for their continued support and encouragement.”

For more information about Daughters of Charity go HERE

For more stories on the Daughters of Charity 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 ilovelimerick.com 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.

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