Pictured at the launch of The Enterprising Community were Marie Price Bolger, CEO of ILDN; Dr Senan Cooke; John O’Shea, Iverk Produce and Eddie Blackmore, Piltown GAA club
“The Enterprising Community” by Dr Senan Cooke was launched in Patrick’s College, Dublin City University and was attended by Sean Kelly, MEP; Michael Ring, Minister for Rural and Community Development, Professor Joe O’Hara, Dublin City University, Dr. Anne Looney, Dean of Education Institute, Dublin City University, and Brendan Whelan, CEO Social Finance Foundation.
Senan Cooke is a native of Kilmacow and has lived in Dunhill, Co. Waterford since 1974 where he has been a member of his community, social enterprise groups.
He has contributed to a growing national discourse on social entrepreneurship and the potential for local communities to create jobs and shape their own futures.
Through the work of an inspiring and committed group of community volunteers of which Senan is a member, the rural parish of Dunhill-Fenor, Co. Waterford has developed 15 social enterprises ranging from Dunhill Ecopark and Enterprise Centre and Education Centre to projects in Fenor including Fenor Bog over past 20 years.
Senan’s book is informed by a lifetime of involvement with voluntary and community groups. It provides a bottom up perspective on the capacity within communities to re-generate.
The book describes the age old values which sustain volunteerism, communities as problem solvers and wealth creators and the potential of dormant resources all of which combined with sense and pride of place serve to strengthen and grow rural and urban communities in innovative and sustainable ways.
Drawing on a number of case studies, the book gives a practical and insightful understanding into the challenges and approaches to socio-economic innovation.
Minister Ring spoke of Dunhill-Fenor as a template which can provide insights too help other communities and social entrepreneurs around the country.