Com­mu­nity spirit

Irish Examiner - County - - Front page - Sean O’Rior­dan

A fam­ily re­source cen­tre and a man who has given six decades of his life vol­un­teer­ing were the main win­ners of the 2018 Cork County Mayor’s Awards.

A group be­hind a very suc­cess­ful fam­ily re­source cen­tre and a man who has given six decades of his life vol­un­teer­ing were the main win­ners of the 2018 Cork County Mayor’s Awards.

A to­tal of 11 awards were pre­sented on the night, in­clud­ing two over­all win­ners.

The main Com­mu­nity Award went to Car­rigt­wohill Fam­ily Re­source Cen­tre which, in 1991, be­gan pro­vid­ing par­ent­ing and per­sonal de­vel­op­ment classes along with home­work, shared read­ing and adult ed­u­ca­tion classes.

As de­mand grew the cen­tre ex­panded by ba­sic com­puter classes, a preschool fa­cil­ity, a break­fast club for chil­dren from the Trav­eller com­mu­nity fol­lowed by a home­work club soon after.

Séan Mur­phy, from Youghal, was the re­cip­i­ent of the over­all in­di­vid­ual award.

He was re­cently hon­oured by the East Cork GAA Board for 54 years un­bro­ken ser­vice and is cur­rently the county pres­i­dent of Cork County Fed­er­a­tion of Muin­tir na Tire.

The win­ners were picked from 34 nom­i­na­tions which came from across the county.

Three award win­ners were cho­sen from each of the coun­cil’s di­vi­sions — North­ern, South­ern and Western.

Those be­hind Drom­a­hane Com­mu­nity Park group won one of the north­ern divi­sion ti­tles for prov­ing a gath­er­ing place for fam­i­lies and so­cial groups as well as adopt­ing the philoso­phies of both the Cork Age Friendly Al­liance and Foróige to en­sure par­tic­i­pa­tion of all mem­bers of the com­mu­nity, ir­re­spec­tive of age or abil­ity.

The sec­ond north­ern divi­sional award went to the Old Kil­crumper Grave­yard Friends’ As­so­ci­a­tion who have com­pleted outstanding work in clean­ing the cemetery in Fer­moy, ren­o­vat­ing around 100 graves to date.

The third award in the divi­sion went to Wayne O’Don­nell from Mal­low who worked as a leader in Op­er­a­tion Trans­for­ma­tion. Through his work on the RTÉ show, Wayne acted as an ex­tremely pos­i­tive role model for other young men through­out the coun­try who are try­ing to lose weight and adopt a health­ier lifestyle.

The over­all win­ners, mean­while, were Car­rigt­wohill Fam­ily Re­source Cen­tre and Sean Mur­phy, both nom­i­nated by the South­ern divi­sion.

The other win­ner from that divi­sion was Sis­ter Em­manuel Leonard from Cobh. She was one of the found­ing mem­bers of Cobh Youth Ser­vices in 1991 and is its cur­rent pres­i­dent.

Sr Em­manuel is also a found­ing mem­ber of Cobh No Name which is a youth group work­ing with young peo­ple to help them have fun with­out drugs or al­co­hol.

Castle­town kin­neigh Ladies Club, mean­while, won one of the Western divi­sion awards. The club has worked tire­lessly in its com­mu­nity and held count­less fundrais­ers for all kinds of char­i­ta­ble causes in­clud­ing Can­cer Con­nect, Cork Penny Din­ners, Dun­man­way Meals on Wheels, En­able Ire­land and West Cork Rapid Re­sponse.

Those who es­tab­lished the Lusi­ta­nia Mu­seum Old Head Sig­nal Tower in Kin­sale were the sec­ond divi­sional win­ner.

After many years of hard work they fi­nally saw their dream come true on May 7 last year when the old sig­nal tower was re­opened along with a spe­cial memo­rial gar­den to those who lost their lives on the liner.

The fi­nal award win­ner in the divi­sion was Helen Dempsey from Sk­ib­bereen.

She is pres­i­dent of the St Vin­cent De Paul con­fer­ences in Ban­don, Bantry, Clon­akilty, Dun­man­way and Sk­ib­bereen which has helped many peo­ple over the years.

Helen also set up the suc­cess­ful Sk­ib­bereen Walk­ing Fes­ti­val in 2017.

Mayor of County Cork, Cllr De­clan Hur­ley, said he was de­lighted to be able to high­light the achieve­ments of the award win­ners.

The Dun­man­way-based mayor noted an amaz­ing 34 com­mu­nity groups and in­di­vid­u­als had been nom­i­nated ini­tially and cho­sen for the su­perb con­tri­bu­tions and im­prove­ments made to com­mu­ni­ties across Cork County.

“That is a won­der­ful in­dict­ment of the cul­ture that we have in our county and one which I am de­lighted to be in a po­si­tion to recog­nise, and cel­e­brate, at the Mayor’s Com­mu­nity Awards.”

Mayor Hur­ley went on to say: “I would like to see even more nom­i­na­tions for the Mayor’s Awards next year.

“I would like to see the ethos of vol­un­teerism go for­ward and spread to ben­e­fit each other and for the ben­e­fits to our­selves. Any lit­ter that is picked, any time do­nated, any thought shared, all go towards mak­ing our com­mu­ni­ties even stronger and cre­ate great places to live more hap­pily.”

Pic­tures: David Keane

Above, Mary Keo­hane, Deb­o­rah Maguire and Sue Pam­ment, all from Blar­ney, en­joy­ing the County Mayor’s com­mu­nity awards cer­e­mony at Cork County Hall. Right: Mayor of the County of Cork Cllr De­clan Hur­ley makes the pre­sen­ta­tion to Sean Mur­phy, over­all...

Mayor of the County of Cork Cllr De­clan Hur­ley makes the pre­sen­ta­tion to the Old Kil­crumper Grave­yard group of Robert But­ter­worth and John Fen­ton, at the County Mayor’s com­mu­nity awards cer­e­mony for 2018 hosted by Cork County Coun­cil, at Cork County...

Ai­dan O’Sul­li­van and Louise Daly, Kil­murry, at awards event.

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