The Kilkenny Famine Experience is one of the county winners of the National Lottery Good Causes Awards 2019
The Kilkenny Famine Experience, Freebooters AFC, the No Name Club, a local Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind branch, the Open Circle Community Arts and Castlecomer Community School have been revealed as Kilkenny's six county winners in the National Lottery Good Causes Awards 2019.
The awards were created to honour and showcase the inspiring work being carried out by thousands of projects, clubs and individuals in their local communities across Ireland thanks to National Lottery Good Causes funding.
These winners will now go forward to the regional finals, competing for a place in the national finals in Dublin on Saturday, November 2. Each category winner will received €10,000 and the overall Good Cause of the Year will receive an additional €25,000.
"We were bowled over by the number and calibre of entries we received for these awards and it is proof that organisations supported by National Lottery funding are having a huge impact in their local communities. Recognising and celebrating this impact is what the National Lottery Good Causes Awards is all about," said National Lottery CEO, Dermot Griffin.
Sport - Freebooters AFC: Freebooters AFC accommodate 400 playing members from 5 years to young adults from the most disadvantaged areas of Kilkenny City. The Fairgreen pitch has transformed since 2017 when National Lottery funding made it possible to erect fencing and netting to curb anti-social behavior.
Health & Wellbeing – Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind: Irish Guide Dogs for the Blind is Ireland's national charity dedicated to helping persons who are blind or vision impaired and families of children with autism to achieve improved mobility, independence and social inclusion. The Kilkenny branch used funding to supply service dogs in the kilkenny area.
Arts & Culture - Open Circle Community Arts: Open Circle Community Arts Collective is a community-based, for-impact organisation whose mission is to inspire interest and maximum participation in the arts both locally and nationally for Kilkenny women.
Heritage - Kilkenny Famine Experience: The Kilkenny Famine Experience is a community reconnection project, Free AV Tour and commemorative bronze sculpture created and delivered by MacDonagh Junction Shopping Centre, Kilkenny from January 2017 to November 2017. The experience brings the discovery of 976 human famine victims from the 1800s, found on site pre-development, back into living memory and connects them to individuals across the globe.
Community - Castlecomer Community School: The sports centre at Castlecomer Community School has undergone a lot of work. A running track, floodlighting, two full sized sand based playing pitches, a dressing room complex and a new gym has opened since 2010 and is open to the whole community of Castlecomer.
Youth - No Name Club: The No Name Club ensures that every young person involved in our clubs are given the opportunity to become responsible active citizens. No Name supports and challenges young people by allowing them the opportunity to create and design spaces and activities that suit their needs and interests.
Speaking on selecting the winners, Broadcaster, publisher and businesswoman, Norah Casey, who is Chair of the competition’s judging panel, said it was a privilege to be involved in these awards and to learn first-hand of the impact of Good Causes.
"They truly are ordinary people doing extraordinary things. With more than 480 entries, selecting the county winners has been a very tough job. I congratulate all of those who have come through the County phase of the competition and look forward to the regional finals later this month," she said.
Nearly 30 cent in every €1 spent on National Lottery games – or over €620,000 per day goes back to Good Causes all over the country in the areas of Sports, Arts, Culture, Heritage, Community, Health, Youth and the Irish Language. Last year alone more than €226 million in funds for Good Causes was raised by participants of the National Lottery.