Friday, July 31, 2009

Ireland’s Community spirit never died, report finds - 2 out of 3 regularly engage in volunteering /community activities

Community spirit is alive and well in Ireland, according to a report by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) that makes minced meat of the widely held view that community spirit and volunteering declined during the boom years.

The report echoes views expressed to ‘Changing Ireland’ last year by a Volunteer Centres Ireland spokesperson saying volunteering had not gone into decline.

The CSO statistics show, on average, almost two-thirds of people in the Republic of Ireland regularly took part in voluntary or community activities.

Nonetheless, there remains a crisis in community participation levels in disadvantaged areas, particularly among those with low education, the unemployed, people in poor health, immigrants and older people.

Irish Times reporter Carl O’Brien lifted the story from the doldrums of a statistical report to give it the front-page treatment. He reports that “community ties seem particularly healthy” and says the CSO figures challenge the belief that the boom years eroded community spirit.

Read Carl’s main report here, further analysis here and the paper’s editorial from July 30th.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Galway Travellers Movement want alternatives to evictions

As most of Galway celebrated the City's arts festival, an Irish Times news report yesterday highlighted the work of one of Galway city's CDPs - the Galway Traveller Movement - to stand with the community against cultural oppression. While thousands of people planned parties, some families faced eviction.

A report launched two years ago by the Galway Traveller Movement found people were very proud to be Travellers, despite the discrimination they face.

We re-publish here a photo (by Derek Speirs) from an exhibition held at that time by Galway Travellers Movement. It features Margaret and Nora Delaney. The full news on the 'Galway Traveller Movement Baseline Report' launch is available at: Previous 'Changing Ireland' news reports over the years catalogue the work of the Galway Travellers Movement to stand up with the community against oppression.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Examiner leads with fears by Civil Society groups to protest too loudly

The Irish Examiner's lead front page story, in their edition dated Tuesday July 7th, has highlight the fear felt in Civil Society in Ireland - by groups representing and involving the poor and needy - to speak up and be heard.
To read the story, click here for the IRISH EXAMINER