The Good Causes Awards honour the inspiring work and achievements of thousands of projects, clubs and individuals from all over Ireland who, with the help of National Lottery Good Causes funding, have had an extraordinary impact on their local communities.
Now in the lead up to the finals, Chairperson of Ireland Reaching Out, Mike Feerick said: “ The passion, commitment and enthusiasm of Ireland Reaching Out Volunteers across Ireland has enabled us to be finalists in the National Lottery Good Causes Awards this year. Our thanks to them and all IrelandXO volunteers and members across the world for helping to connect Irish Diaspora in their thousands to their place of origin in Ireland over the past ten years."
Pictured Above: Chairperson Mike Feerick and Programme Manager Laura Colleran receive the Regional Award for Heritage from the National Lottery's Robert Magee.
Out of an original pool of 480 entries, Ireland Reaching Out is now one of the 36 groups from all over Ireland that will be attending the awards ceremony on Saturday the 2nd of November when winners of the 7 categories will be announced, as well as an overall winner, who will be awarded the prize of €25,000.
Watch video and find out more about Ireland Reaching Out and the Good Causes Awards
Programme Manager Laura Colleran says: “Reaching the finals of the Good Causes awards, offers a massive opportunity to create awareness about the Ireland Reaching Out programme across the country. Being in the company of 35 inspiring programmes, from all over Ireland, is hugely rewarding and we wish them all the best of luck.”
Picture above: Earlier this year IrelandXO volunteer Tim O'Connell welcomed Peggy Mee back to her ancestral homestead at Abbey, near Ballyorgan in County Limerick.
To make it this far in the competition is a recognition of the all the work that is done by local Irish communities to reconnect descendants from the area with the people living there today. So far in 2019, Ireland Reaching Out volunteers have welcomed more than 300 groups of visitors to mostly rural Irish communities, and helped thousands more who cannot make the journey home, on the IrelandXO message board.
Pictured above: Volunteer Coordinator Jane Halloran Ryan looks through old photos from her ancestors who emigrated to the USA.
The IrelandXO website is an effective, free tool which local communities can use to promote their heritage activities to a global audience and in doing so, connect with and growing their own global diaspora network. If you would like to help your community connect with and grow its global diaspora network why not register as a volunteer of the programme? There are many different roles available, from responding to queries about your local community on the message board and recording your localities heritage via the XO Chronicles, to meeting with returning descendants of the area.