MOV­ING STORY OF HOPE STUNS ROOM BUSI­NESS AWARDS HEARS EMO­TIONAL STORY OF TRI­UMPH OVER AD­VER­SITY

Fingal Independent - - NEWS - By KEN PHELAN

THERE was one win­ner of the re­cent Fin­gal Dublin Cham­ber Busi­ness Ex­cel­lence and CSR Awards who had more rea­sons to cel­e­brate his award than most as it marked a dra­matic turn­around in his life.

Fin­gal Cit­i­zens In­for­ma­tion Ser­vice was de­lighted to win the ‘Best Pub­lic Ser­vice Award’ at the Fin­gal Dublin Cham­ber Busi­ness Ex­cel­lence and CSR Awards 2018, held at the Crowne Plaza Ho­tel re­cently and the ser­vice’s de­vel­op­ment man­ager, An­drew Mccann told the au­di­ence at the awards just why the recog­ni­tion meant so much.

At the gala event, hosted by Marty Whe­lan, and with over 500 at­ten­dees, the Fin­gal Cit­i­zens In­for­ma­tion Ser­vice was also short-listed for ‘Best Not For Profit Or­gan­i­sa­tion and ‘Best Cus­tomer Ser­vice – Ser­vices Sec­tor.’

An­drew Mccann, De­vel­op­ment Man­ager of the ser­vice gave an emo­tional ac­cep­tance speech which had a huge im­pact on the room, in­clud­ing the host, who was also over­come with his words.

Mr Mccann said: ‘Five years ago tonight I sat in the au­di­ence, un­suc­cess­ful. Less than two weeks later my wife passed away. I have not been back to the Awards evening since then.

‘A year ago I was di­ag­nosed with can­cer, com­pleted my treat­ment and surgery, and I am now can­cer-free.

‘I was also lucky enough to have meet a beau­ti­ful lady, who I mar­ried in July this year.

‘This award is the ic­ing on the cake.’ Mr Mccann re­ceived a stand­ing ova­tion from the au­di­ence for his in­spir­ing words.

He said his job, and fo­cus­ing on the ‘best in­ter­ests of the pub­lic and team’, had helped him through ‘these dif­fi­cult years’, and thanked the Chair and the Board for sup­port­ing him, and for al­low­ing him to con­tinue work dur­ing his can­cer treat­ment.

He also thanked his team, who ‘pulled to­gether, in my ab­sence, and en­sured the ser­vice main­tained its ex­cel­lent ser­vice to the pub­lic.’

In 2017, Fin­gal Cit­i­zens In­for­ma­tion Ser­vice sup­ported over 180,000 peo­ple in North Fin­gal, an­swer­ing over 24,000 queries and con­nect­ing with over 18,500 caller con­tacts.

The ser­vice, via its four cen­tres in Swords, Sk­er­ries, Balbriggan and Malahide, opens to the pub­lic for over 125 hours per week via its team of over 80 peo­ple, in­clud­ing vol­un­teers.

The ser­vice won awards of over €56,000 for clients in 2017, and closed 60 com­plex ad­vo­cacy cases, spend­ing over 1,200 hours alone on this work.

Cit­i­zens In­for­ma­tion pro­vides free, im­par­tial and con­fi­den­tial as­sis­tance and ad­vo­cacy to clients on all their rights and en­ti­tle­ments, across all so­cial and civic en­ti­tle­ments.

The team are com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing a com­pre­hen­sive quality and con­sis­tent free ser­vice to the pub­lic.

Felic­ity and An­drew Mccann at the Fin­gal Dublin Cham­ber Awards.

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