Gold Medal for Adare in this year’s Limerick Going for Gold 2017 – Adare was awarded the top prize of €10,000, with €7,000 and €5,000 being presented to Abbeyfeale (2nd) and South Limerick City (3rd) respectively.

Gold Medal for Adare in this year’s Adare Limerick Going for Gold 2017

By I Love Limerick Correspondent Jordan Mac Cormaic

There were jubilant celebrations in The Strand Hotel, Limerick last night as Adare claimed the top prize in Limerick Going for Gold 2017.

Limerick Going for Gold 2017, which is sponsored by the JP McManus Charitable Foundation, has a total prize pool of over €75,000.

It is organised by Limerick City and County Council and supported by Limerick’s Live 95FM, The Limerick Leader and The Limerick Chronicle, The Limerick Post, Parkway Shopping Centre, I Love Limerick and Southern Marketing Media & Design.

A total of twelve communities made the final of the Limerick Going for Gold Challenge Category before the winners were announced at the grand finale, attended by hundreds of people from communities across Limerick city and county.

Prizes were also awarded in six other Going for Gold categories.

Mayor of the City and County of Limerick Cllr Stephen Keary congratulated the participating communities for helping to ensure that Limerick Going for Gold 2017 continued to be a tremendous success.

“Limerick Going for Gold’s mission is to make Limerick a brighter, better, cleaner place to live, work and visit and every community who participated in this year’s event must be congratulated on the amazing job you have done once again.”

“It never ceases to amaze me how a shared sense of community spirit among people can help to transform an area.  It is clear that Going for Gold has also helped to complement, consolidate and add value to the council’s involvement and engagement with the broader community sector in Limerick.”

The Challenge Category final was made up of 12 groups from across Limerick.

Finalists were chosen by popular vote on Limerick’s Live 95FM over a five-week period.

The popular vote finalists were Athea, Castleconnell, Galbally, Hospital and Oola.  They were joined by wildcard finalists Abbeyfeale, Adare, Croom, Foynes, Kilfinane, Moyross, South Limerick City who were selected by the Limerick Going for Gold Judges Richard Barry (Tidy Towns Chair Tallanstown Co Louth) and Jimmy Feane (retired Director of Service, Limerick City and County Council).

Adare was awarded the top prize of €10,000, with €7,000 and €5,000 being presented to Abbeyfeale (2nd) and South Limerick City (3rd) respectively.

The other placed finalists were Oola and Croom (4th – €3,000/ 5th – €2,000).

The remaining groups were commended and received €1,000 each.

Head of the Adare Limerick Going for Gold 2017 team George Stack said of the win: “This means everything to everyone in Adare, it’s something that everyone in the community has helped with in various ways.”

He continued: “I’m so pleased for all of the marvellous people that have given their time and effort to keep Adare in tip-top shape.”

Limerick Gong for Gold 2017

Head of the Adare Limerick Going for Gold 2017 team George Stack said of the win: “This means everything to everyone in Adare, it’s something that everyone in the community has helped with in various ways.”

Going for Gold 2017 Limerick in Bloom was won by Kilteely (€5,000) with runners-up Patrickswell getting €3,000.  In third place was Croagh (€2,000).

The following groups were highly commended and each received an award of €1000 – Ardpatrick, Athea, Broadford, Bruff, Caherconlish, Galbally, Kilmallock, and Newcastle West.

Prizes were also awarded to Tidy Towns groups based on their Tidy Towns score.

The Overall most improved across Limerick was Kilcornan (€2,000).

The Overall most improved in each Municipal District will be awarded €1,000 each and they were Abbeyfeale, Glenroe, Gouldavoher and Rathkeale.

The overall winner of the Residential Area Category (€2,000) was presented to Caherdavin with Monaleeen Park in 2nd place (€1,500) and Cappamore Estates in 3rd place (€1,000).

The following areas received highly commended (€500) – Mill Road, Croom Estates, Grange, Glenbrook, Glendale & Glendale Lawn, Castletroy View, Gouldavoher, Carraballawn, Carriglea, Drominbeg, Slugaire, Woodlawn, Verdant, Carriglea.

The Grange in Raheen received the award for Best Newcomer (€500).

Endeavour Awards of between €500 and €1,000 were presented Limerick Fairtrade Committee, Limerick Youth Service Centre, Southill Tidy Towns Group and Westfields Wetlands to encourage and/ or support ongoing work on the environment.

In recognition of National Reuse Month the Limerick Going for Gold Reuse Award went to the UL Environmental Committee for their repair and repurpose initiative of on-campus laptops, macs and smartphones, and to Our Lady of Lourdes for their Food Waste Prevention Project.

The Garden Competition Category was sponsored by the Parkway Shopping Centre and featured a prize fund of €1,000 in shopping vouchers.

Roger Beck from the Parkway Shopping Centre presented prizes to John and Ita Carroll, Castlemahon (1st), Frank Costelloe, Askeaton (2nd) and Robert O’Byrne, Kennedy Park (3rd).

In a new departure for 2017, the Limerick Going for Gold judges awarded a Judges’ Award trophy to The Bake House, Bruff, Tait House, Southill, Leen’s Hotel, Abbeyfeale, The Bridges in Croom and the Stryker Roundabout, Raheen.

The #Loveyourlimerick Photographic Competition was won by John McCarthy, for his depiction of a day in the life of Kilteely and Fiona Quinn for capturing a moment many of us will have seen along the quays in Limerick city.

Speaking at the event Noel Earlie from the JP McManus Charitable Foundation said: “It was considered important that recognition be given to community groups, in whatever form they take, for their contribution to the environment.  They’re role models for all of us, leading by example.  Congratulations to all the communities involved.  Your efforts are paying off.”

To visit the official website for Limerick Going for Gold click here

To read more Going for Gold stories on I Love Limerick click here

Castleconnell winner of the Limerick Going for Gold competition 2015

Limerick Going for Gold 2015, which for the first time included the communities across Limerick City and County, featured a prize pool of over €76,000, courtesy of the JP McManus Charitable Foundation.
the JP McManus Charitable Foundation.

Castleconnell were named as the overall winner in the Challenge category at Limerick Going for Gold Competition 2015, receiving a €10,000 prize.

I had the honour of taking on the role of Master of Ceremonies for the event, which raised awareness of environmental issues, got people involved in their own areas and made a physical difference in communities.

JP McManus presented Castleconnell at the Limerick Going for Gold Competition 2015 with their cheque and trophy, thanking them for their role in their community.“There’s a great passion here, of people and a love for the county. Everybody embraces everybody.“I feel very privileged and honoured to be here and everybody’s a winner here. I can see Limerick getting cleaner and brighter, I am very happy to be from here,” McManus said.

Over €76,000 was awarded to Limerick communities who raised awareness of environmental issues, got people involved in their own areas and made a physical difference in communities. Through four categories – Challenge, Limerick in Bloom, Best Front Garden and Tidy Towns Incentive categories – Limerick communities were awarded with monetary prizes and were commended on their “fantastic” work.

Awards were also presented on the night in Endeavour and Residential Areas categories. Limerick Mayor Liam Galvin was in attendance on the night, acknowledging the role of communities and sponsors in the Going for Gold initiative.

The Challenge Category winners at the Limerick Going for Gold Competition 2015, whose finalists were chosen by public vote following radio and newspaper coverage, included Kilteely, Broadford, Anglesboro, Rathkeale, Hospital and O’Malley Keyes, each receiving an award of €1,000. Croom and Caherdavin came in joint fifth place in the Challenge category, each receiving an award of €2,000.Kilfinane, reaching fourth place, were presented with a cheque for €3,000 by Gerry Boland. South Limerick City received an award of €5,000, coming in third place in the Challenge category.

Check out the Limerick Going for Gold Facebook page here

Read more about the Going for Gold competition here

JP McManus Fund finances programme for students with disabilities at Mary Immaculate College

JP McManus finances MIC students with disabilities, the JP McManus Fund recently announced details of its intention to provide much needed funding to the Certificate in General Learning and Personal Development (CGLPD) programme at Mary Immaculate College (MIC) Limerick.

The CGLPD programme, which has been in existence in the College since 2013, has as its main aim to enhance the quality of life of young adults with intellectual disabilities by providing third level opportunities.  MIC, the only provider of teacher education in the country to offer this accredited programme, receives no public funding towards the programme as current national policy has yet to recognise that adults with intellectual disabilities are entitled to study at a higher education campus.

Anne O’Byrne, Lecturer in Inclusive Education, MIC, first investigated the possibility of hosting this programme at MIC in 2009 as according to her “Traditionally, young adults with intellectual disabilities have not been given the opportunity to participate in third level education. While third level education is a valuable pursuit for young adults in society, it has not generally been afforded to this group, who historically have occupied marginalised identities. A third level education experience allows students to develop and mature in an educational and social context and assists with future employment prospects”.

The two year programme is devoted to the academic learning, personal growth and career development prospects of the student whereby the full development of each student’s potential, dignity and self-worth is embraced. The programme, according to Prof. Michael A Hayes, President of MIC; “is an example of what can be accomplished by thinking ‘outside of the box’. This initiative represents a radical reconceptualisation of third level education. Mary Immaculate College has been to the forefront of the development of inclusive practice at preschool, primary and post primary levels and this initiative represents an opportunity to apply those values, skills and attitudes to our own third level setting”.

While the programme in CGLPD programme has direct benefits for the students enrolled on the programme, there are also many benefits for the students’ peers and the larger student body at MIC. According to Prof. Teresa O’Doherty, Dean of Education, MIC, this programme has potential for far greater impact than would be possible on other campuses as it is situated within a Faculty of Education which is home to 1400 pre-service teachers and 300 early childhood educators. “The exposure and engagement of MIC’s total student body to the programme will have ramifications for approaches and attitudes to the inclusion of young children within Irish schools and crèches nationally” she said. “As teacher education providers we need to challenge all our students to be advocates for inclusion, we need to enable them to view inclusion as a normal way of working each and every day. Equity and equality must motivate our work and theirs in the classroom, and they need to be prepared adequately to live out their commitment to inclusion within schools”. 

According to Prof. O’Doherty international research has shown that one of the greatest barriers to successful inclusion is the attitude of teachers. “Teachers need to have positive attitudes, tolerance and understanding of inclusion and diversity. They need to be convinced of the benefits of inclusion and develop a sense of responsibility for all learners.  The continued provision of the CGLPD programme on the MIC campus will have a cascading impact on the schools and early childhood settings in which they will ultimately work”.

Speaking on her hopes for the programme Anne O’Byrne said “We at Mary Immaculate College believe that this programme will increase access to work life experiences as well as nurturing educational and social outcomes for students with intellectual disabilities and further extend their personal capacity to become self-determining human beings.  My hope is that this programme will cause us all to reflect on the dignity of the person, what it is to be human, and to accept, quite simply, that who we are is enough”.

The JP McManus Benevolent Fund supports local community initiatives and non-profit organisations throughout the Mid-West of Ireland. To date it has awarded an impressive €11,367,667 to community, healthcare, local infrastructure and education development projects.  Prof. Hayes, paid tribute to the JP McManus Benevolent Fund saying “We are indebted to the JP McManus Benevolent Fund for their generous funding of €200,000 towards this programme, ensuring its future for the next four years.   MIC’s Mission Statement commits ‘to promote equity in society and to provide an environment where all have freedom and opportunity to achieve their full potential’.  This funding further enables us to deliver on our commitment to inclusivity”.

Continuing he said; “We believe that the learning from this initiative will inform inclusive policy and practice at third level in the future locally, nationally and internationally”.  He concluded by paying tribute to the programmes partners, the Brothers of Charity in Ennis, Enable Ireland in Limerick, St. Cronan’s Association Ltd., and St. Joseph’s Foundation.

Commenting on behalf of the JP McManus Benevolent Fund, Ms. Sue Ann Foley, Chairperson, said;“We are delighted to support such a wonderful initiative like CGLPD.  A programme like this serves to benefit not only the students and their families, but the wider community involved. Supporting educational initiatives is an important criteria for the Fund and we look forward to monitoring the progress of those involved.”

Although further philanthropic funding will be required to fully meet the resource requirements of the CGLPD programme the College is confident it will secure the necessary funds and the programme will continue as planned with the next intake commencing in September 2015.

For more information, check out JP McManus’s Benevolent Fund website here
Check out JP McManus’s Benevolent Fund Facebook here
Check out Mary Immaculate College’s website here
Check out Mary Immaculate College’s Facebook here
Check out Mary Immaculate College’s Twitter here.
Read more about JP McManus’s Benevolent Fund here and Mary Immaculate College here.