safeTALK Training - Tuesday 20th March

We are partnering with the Regional Suicide Resource Office to deliver safeTALK training in the Cathedral Parish Centre, Carlow on Tuesday 20th March. There are still some places available - Contact 051 874013 for further details.

LGBTI Network Get Together


Carlow County Development Partnership CLG is delighted to be leading out on this project through Healthy Ireland funding. We are looking at the needs of the LGBTI community in Carlow.

Please spread the word and if you cannot attend the meeting on Saturday, please ensure to fill out the survey monkey

International Women's Day March 8th

International Women's Day ( March 8th ) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.  The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.  It is celebrated in many countries around the world.  It is a day when women are recognized for their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political.

Running Order

 9 .45am        -           Opening/Welcome (Fr Conn O  Maoldhomnaigh

                            President Carlow College – St Patrick’s)

10.00am      -         Mary White – (Former Minister of State for Equality, Human Rights, and Integration)

10.20am      -       Catherine Lane (National Women’s Council)

10.40am      -          Avril Bailey (Psychotherapist - Dublin Human Givens Centre)

11.00am - 11.30am    -   Break


(Free - please sign up at entrance desk)

11.15am - 12noon Venue – Cobden Hall

Zumba Dancing – ‘Fusion Fitness’ Leslie Dempsey


11.15am - 1.00pm Venue – Student Union

 Arts & Crafts –  ‘Mural Mayhem’ Jean Robertson


11.00 - 11.30am  Venue – Paul Cullen Room

               Mindfulness (Karl Duffy – Carlow County Development Partnership)


11.30am - 12.15pm Venue – James Fintan Lawlor

Healthy Living – ‘Body & Soul’ –Rachel Doyle  

                                              ‘Blueberry Soul’


 12.15pm - 1.30pm  Venue – Thomas Wall

Developing Resilience and Emotional Well-Being

                                     Avril Bailey – ‘Dublin Human Givens’


 1.40 pm - 2.30pm

Mental Health Support – Stories of Hope

Josie Funcheon (GROW) – Geraldine Kelly (TUS)   


2.40 pm - 3.30pm

The Launch of Photographic Exhibition VISUAL – ‘Press for Progress’

Schools Art Competition



Hacketstown Community CORE Officially Opened

It was a momentous day for Hacketstown on Friday 23rd February as its new Community CORE was officially opened. This represents a huge achievement for the members of Hacketstown Community Development Association who are eager and enthusiastic about the CORE.

The CORE building (situated in the old CRISP centre) has recently been donated to the community of Hacketstown by Carlow County Council. Hacketstown Community CORE will be a focal point for educational and recreational courses for the entire community in Hacketstown. The community hub will also act as an information point and drop-in centre as well as a meeting place for all age groups.

Senator Jennifer Murnane O’Connor, Councilors John Pender and Andrea Dalton, alongside representatives from Carlow County Development Partnership CLG, Carlow Volunteer Centre, Carlow PPN (Public Participation Network), St Catherine’s Community Services Centre, KCETB, and many more were present.

Speaking at the opening, CEO of Carlow County Development Partnership Mary Walsh highlighted several streams of funding and services that will be forthcoming through LEADER, SICAP and the Tús scheme, which has already been operational in Hacketstown for the past five years.  Mary also paid particular tribute to the Tús workers who assisted with the refurbishment of the centre and getting the CORE building ready for the opening day.

Chairperson of Hacketstown Community Development Association Mary Doyle was enthusiastic in her vision for the centre, "The Core means 'the centre, the  place to go to'. This is a huge achievement for the members of our Hacketstown Community Group and will act as an information point and drop-in centre as well as a meeting place for all age groups". 

Over the next few months, Carlow County Development Partnership will offer programs such as Online Safety, Nutrition Workshops, Yoga, Mindfulness, Safe Pass, Manual Handling, First Aid, Computer Training and many more.

The CORE will also be central to the Care and Repair scheme, of which there are currently 21 members catering to the home and social needs of the elderly in the Hacketstown area.

Visit of Lithuanian Ambassador to Carlow

Carlow County Development Partnership were delighted to be part of the Carlow delegation which welcomed the visit of the Lithuanian Ambassador Egidijus Meilūnas to the county yesterday, February 21st. He was accompanied by Dr. Giedrius Janauskas Vice Dean in the Humanities Department at the University of Kaunas. The visit acknowledged the positive contribution made by the Lithuanian community in the county and explored possible areas of co-operation in the future, including schools and cultural projects. The Carlow delegation consisted of the Cathaoirleach of the Council, William Paton, Kathleen Holohan,  Chief Executive Carlow County Council, John Brophy, the Chair of Carlow LCDC, the Chief Officer Michael Brennan , John Shorthall,  County Librarian, Fr Conn Ó Maoldhomhnaigh, President of Carlow College, Helen Maher,  Programme Board Chair: Citizenship and Community Studies, Carlow College and Karl Duffy,  Social Inclusion Manager of Carlow County Development Partnership,

We have supported the Lithuanian community over the past few years in capacity building events around maintaining their own culture,  and through funding towards the Lithuanian preschool premises and also through our support in the SICAP Programme for the Carlow Integration Forum and its events. The chairperson of the Forum is a Lithuanian National, Sandra Kazlauskaite, who has been involved in numerous programme with us over the years, included the holistic Body Mind and Soul Programme as well as in her role as co-ordinator of Failte Isteach – a community based volunteer language and welcome programme which we also fund.

We wish to continue and develop this support for the community going forward beyond or support for the pre-school,  and this support will begin with two small school-based projects over the next few months.

Firstly, to celebrate the important year of the centenary of regaining Lithuanian statehood in 1918, we are going to organize and sponsor a prize in one of the schools in Carlow town for the best project by a child which focuses on Lithuanian history or culture. We will aim this at children aged around 10, and hope that the Ambassador himself, or someone from the Embassy staff will help us to select the winner.

Secondly, we are going to link a class from a Carlow National School  – over the internet – with a school in Lithuania, maybe to develop a common project on the different cultures.  Once again the Ambassador agreed to help us identify an appropriate school in Lithuania.

The meeting also discussed the psychological challenges around young people developing their identity between two cultures and explored possible research ideas between the University in Lithuania and Carlow College.

Overall, a very positive exchange of ideas and energy.

First LGBTI Focus Group meeting for Carlow

County Carlow is made up of diverse and multi-cultural communities with people from a whole host of different backgrounds with unique characteristics and experiences. The SICAP Programme is underpinned by a Equality Horizontal theme which seeks to ensure that every individual in the county is treated fairly and equally and no less favourably, specific to their needs, including in areas of race, gender, disability, religion or belief, sexual orientation and age. This equality work refers to that work which can be described as having outcomes which promote a more equal society in Carlow.
In line with the objective of this horizontal theme, in 2017 the SICAP team began work with the LGBTIQ community in the county, following representations from Carlow Regional Youth Services who identified a need for LGBTIQ support for adults in Carlow. As part a €100,000 application for Healthy Ireland Funding which was drawn up by a team of relevant agencies on behalf of the LCDC and which saw 6 actions approved, €12,000 was sourced to conduct research on the needs of the LGBTIQ community in Carlow.
As part of this research a first FOCUS GROUP discussion will take place on Saturday in the Talbot Hotel. This will inform the work of seeing what supports can be put in place in the county. Please spread the news to anyone who may be interested.

Carlow County Development Partnership support for Bagenalstown First Responders

It was with great pleasure that Mary Walsh CEO was able to present Paddy Kelly with a cheque for 100 euros to support the work of Bagenalstown Community First Responders on the day that they officially  ‘went live’ for the very first time. Last Friday evening,starting at 8 o clock,  10 volunteer were on standby, with the National Ambulance Service,  ready to react to any cardiac, respiratory, or stroke-related emergencies in a 5 km radius around Bagenalstown. This is the first group of its kind in Carlow and only the second in the whole country.

It has been a long journey to get to this great day. The ten volunteers were in training from April to October, arising out of an idea in Paddy's head when he was involved with the Text Alert scheme in Bagenalstown. He was quick to acknowledge the support of Carlow County Development Partnership, especially through the support given to the group by SICAP Development Specialist Annette Fox: "We would have been lost without you", he said. "Until we met you we were just barely going along".

The system works in the following way. The trained volunteers are on duty for the weekend period and when a call is received through 999 at the National Ambulance service, they are notified and will make their way to the person who needs them. As Paddy explained, the first few minutes can be critical in the case of a  Stroke or Heart attack, and the volunteers will be on hand to assist the person until the arrival of the Ambulance which can take up to 20 minutes. Because of the challenging nature of the work, Paddy admits to being "a little nervous" but is proud of the support that this service is bringing to the community.

Carlow County Development Partnership looks forward to continuing its support for this great initiative in the New Year

Social Farming - presentation of certificates


As noted previously, Carlow County Development Partnership is delighted to be working with Cairdeas and Beam to place 6 adults with intellectual disability on a working farm on Mondays and Thursdays.  Last Thursday the participants from Cairdeas were presented their certificates by Dylan Thomas, SICAP Development Worker, who was able to report on the success of the initiative at first hand and meet the farm family Liam and Simone who are hosting the participants.

SICAP Programme supporting wellness: Carlow Involvement Centre Writer's Group book launch

Carlow County Development Partnership is delighted to have supported Carlow Involvement Centre Writer's Group in the publication and launch of their wonderful book. This book is the culmination of many months work by this amazing group, a peer support group for those with experience of mental health issues. This book is interesting, inspiring and funny in parts, it is a great Christmas present and is available from the Involvement Centre. All proceeds go towards the running of the centre. We look forward to working with the group in 2018!


SICAP Programme - Integration and diversity: Winter Festival

The Carlow County Development Partnership SICAP Programme was delighted to support the 'Winter Festival', hosted by Carlow Integration Forum on December 2nd in An Gairdin Beo.


This event was a great success with wonderful food from around the world, music, and entertainment. More than 130 children visited Santa and had lots of time to chat with him and get a small gift. A grotto was created in the garden, marshmallows were toasted and Christmas wreaths were made. There were lots of activities for the little ones and indeed for everyone. All activities, Santa visits, and the food was free to all who attended. Santa arrived in a spectacular Pink Cadillac, The garden twinkled with fairy lights and it was a magical afternoon. Special thanks to Clonmore Meats for providing the wonderful car for Santa and letting the reindeer have a rest for the big night! Special tanks to Santa for his early arrival and continued updates on his progress to Carlow. Special thanks to Kevin Kelly for the festive refreshments. Thanks to everyone who worked so incredibly hard to make this event such a success

In current Irish policy, integration is defined as the ‘ability to participate to the extent that a person needs and wishes in all of the major components of society without having to relinquish his or her own cultural identity’, thus highlighting the needs for events that allows migrants express their identity through culture, food and music.

The 2017 Migrant Integration Strategy reminds us that "successful integration is the responsibility of Irish society as a whole and will require action by Government, public bodies, service providers,businesses,NGOs but also by local communities". This event showcased the collaboration that this possible between a Local Community group (An Gairdin Beo) and the Integration Forum which supports new communities, supported by the Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme. The focus of the event was to allow recent migrants to the county interact with the host community and participate in a cultural event, highlighting in this case their their own traditions and food.
The success of the event built on the excellent work being done by the Failte Isteach Programme which creates the connections and energy between the individuals who then came forward to support the Integration Forum. The warm atmosphere in the Garden was built upon the friendly informal engagement which is the characteristic of the Failte Isteach Programme.