From Castlebar - County Mayo -

Community Groups
Mayo Social Inclusion Awareness Week 15 - 21 October 2018
13, Oct 2018 - 11:55

Monday 15th - Sunday 21st October

The week supports and highlights a series of initiatives that foster connection and equality. Events that are vibrant, diverse and interesting will take place in many towns throughout the county, including Monday's ‘No Limbs No Limits' talk and discussion by Joanne O'Riordan in Westport Library at 7.30pm. Joanne is a sports journalist, equality activist, Young Person of the Year Award winner, Tedx and U.N. Speaker.

Speaking of her involvement Joanne says: "I'm really happy to be involved in the Social Inclusion Awareness Week in Mayo. It's an important initiative that raises awareness and creates conversation around the inclusion of all people in all day-to-day activities in Ireland. The more we enable and empower everyone, the more all-encompassing and balanced society we build."

Other highlights taking place next week include:

Tue 16 Mind Your Mental Health Workshop Safari Club, Castlebar

Wed 17 The Importance of Making Healthy Connections Castlebar Library

Wed 17 ‘In Her Shoes' Workshops Lough Lannagh, Castlebar

Thur 18 Connecting with Young People through a Human Library Ballinrobe Library

Fri 19 Local Link Mayo - Official Launch Event Country Life Museum, Turlough

Fri 19 Involve Youth Project Ballina Coffee Morning Lower Lord Edward St, Ballina

Sat 20 Open Day at Karen GIY Community Garden Quay Road Ballina

Sat 20 The Cloth of Dreams Exhibition Family Resource Centre, Claremorris

Sun 21 Family Fun Day Crossmolina Badminton Club


MSIAW was launched on Friday 5th October at The Kennedy Glasgow Centre, Ballina by the writers and artists of A Strong Heart - a book of stories and dreams for the future by the Syrian and Palestinian children living in County Mayo. The children who participated in the launch are currently residing in Ballina and they are sisters Lina (12yrs) & Rahaf (14yrs) Shheideh and brothers Amer (10yrs) & Rashed (14yrs) Hussien.


The event was opened with an incredible performance by John Hoban and his wife Isabella. John is a composer, singer, musician and author from Castlebar, he brings music to various and diverse communities and has worked extensively with the elderly, people with disabilities, refugees and rural communities.

Other guest speakers at the event were Jo Holmwood - Acting CEO at Kids' Own Publishing Partnership and Rachel Mansour, Resettlement Support Worker at South West Mayo Development Company. They spoke of their experience of being involved in A Strong Heart. "Kids' Own is the only publishing company in Ireland who publishes books by kids for Kids. We are deeply committed to publishing and developing children's work in Ireland. We believe that children's contribution to our culture and our society, as artists and writers, need to be more widely valued and recognized".

Amongst the many Mayo County Council representatives in attendance was Director of Services for Community and Integrated Development, Catherine McConnell. She spoke of the importance of MSIAW in highlighting initiatives throughout the county that develop and support equality and social connectedness. Ms. McConnell also complimented the work of the Mayo LCDC Social Inclusion and Community Development Working Group, who are responsible for the coordination of the weeks' events.

The launch was closed by Bernard Lawrence a 15-year-old singer from Castlebar, who is gaining much attention and adulation for his talent. He has performed for President Michael D Higgins at the launch of the Travellers Journey Exhibition held at the National Museum of Country Life in Turlough on 10th July, so impressed by his performance President Higgins requested that Bernard perform at Aras an Uachtarain as part of Culture Night celebrations on Friday 21st September.

For more information about Mayo Social Inclusion Awareness Week please contact:

Cora Gilligan, Community & Integrated Development, Mayo County Council (094) 90 64343

@MayoInclusion #MayoInclusion

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