Trish Finegan declares her candidacy for Kilkenny County Council

Tireless campaigner to run as an independent

Sean Keane

Reporter:

Sean Keane

Email:

sean.keane@kilkennypeople.ie

Volunteer seeks place on Kilkenny County Council

Trish Finegan to run as an independent for Kilkenny County Council

Kilkenny mental health campaigner, Trish Finegan, is to seek a seat on Kilkenny County Council.

The tireless volunteer will contest next year's local elections as an independent candidate.

‘I believe that if we work together as a community that positive change will happen. I want to be a driver of that positive, collaborative change," she said today.

Trish has lived and worked in Kilkenny since 1989.  With her husband Eamon Blake she has run Creative Catering Ltd from their base in Dunnamaggin since 1991.  In 1999 she joined Kilkenny Business Women’s Network to create contacts and grow the business.

During her time in the Network she volunteered to sit on the executive in various roles and represented women in business on a number of local organisations including Kilkenny County Enterprise Board, Kilkenny Chamber of Commerce and Kilkenny County Development Board.

She was a founding member of the Parents Council in St Leonard's National School in Dunnamaggin which worked with Parents Councils in Kells, Kilmoganny and Windgap to secure a learning resource teacher to be shared between the four schools.

In 2015 Trish returned to college to study Social, Political and Community Studies in Carlow College, St Patricks. ‘I am passionate about getting people involved in their own communities’ says Trish. ‘My degree will give me a greater understanding of how community development works. It will give me the skills required as a local councillor to empower communities in the Callan and Thomastown electoral area to grow and develop.  I am committed to working with others for the betterment of our local community’.

She chairs Lifelinkk an umbrella group for State, Voluntary and Community organisations in Kilkenny City and County with a mental health remit.  Lifelinkk’s tag line ‘Stronger Together for Mental Health’ sums up the groups ethos. They are the driving force behind October’s week-long festival of positive mental health ‘Craic’d – Letting The Light In’.  As a councillor she will continue to work with Lifelinkk to improve availability and access to information and services for all, particularly for communities outside of Kilkenny City.

She wants to help community organisations, as a councillor, to get involved with the new local government structures to enable them to access the resources and networks required to improve their capabilities, build self-belief and improve their communities.

Trish Finegan said she will be an independent voice working with other local representatives and organisations to see how issues important to local communities can be resolved.

‘As an independent on Kilkenny County Council I can work with you to be as inclusive and collaborative as possible, to voices the concerns of the people in the Callan Thomastown electoral area to the best of my ability’.