Fermanagh Rural Community Network celebrates local heroes

Community spirit was front and center at Fermanagh House this week as the Fermanagh Rural Community Network (FRCN) held its AGM and Celebrating Community Achievement Awards on Monday evening.

Louise McLaughlin, President of FRCN, welcomed the more than 50 people in attendance, as well as those watching online on Zoom, as everyone marked the network’s 28th AGM and 21st Celebrating Community Achievements. Awards.

Barry Boyle, Network Coordinator, gave an overview of FRCN’s work over the past year, with the Local Rural Support Network providing community development support activities to benefit and positively support rural communities in County Fermanagh.

Guest speaker Gráinne O Connor, Geopark Manager, Cuilcagh Lakelands UNESCO Global Geopark (see www.cuilcaghlakelands.org), gave a comprehensive presentation on the Geopark and the main activities carried out in the Geopark area for the benefit of local communities, businesses and the environment and organizing events for local residents and visitors.

Of course, the highlight of the evening was the awards section, highlighting some of the people and groups who have done so much to help their communities, some as relative newcomers and others as faithful, but all giving their time and effort to help other people.

The 2022 Celebrating Community Achievement Awards saw winners announced in two main categories, ‘Local Community Activity’ and ‘Someone Who Made a Difference’, as follows.

Local community activity

Winning Group: Barnlee Crafts and Activities Charity Shop. This group has been nominated for their work running the social enterprise Barnlee Crafts and Activities Shop located in the village of Derrylin since 2013, as a way to raise much needed funds to support adults with learning disabilities.

Certificates of Recognition

Enniskillen Light Operatic (ELO). This group is a long-standing amateur theater group who have performed an annual musical each year at the Ardhowen Theatre.

Lisnaskea Men’s Shelter. This group has been operating since 2014 as part of the Erne East Community Partnership and offers a wide range of activities for men in Lisnaskea and the wider region.

4th Fermanagh Scouts. The group has strived to be a progressive and proactive group for young people in the Lisnaskea area and is run by local volunteers who volunteer their time to help these young people.

Tea and toddlers. This group recently started operating in the Boho Community Hall to provide activities for parents and toddlers in Boho and surrounding areas.

Magheravely Community Development Association. This association has been active for several years and since the opening of the ‘Sunshine Cabin’ in June 2021, the facility has become a hub for a wide range of community activities.

A person who made a difference

The Gabriel D’Arcy Perpetual Cup: Presented to Fergal Trainor de Coa. Fergal was nominated for his ever-present work with the Coa Community Association for over 20 years, noting that he was always willing to lend a helping hand.

It was particularly noted that Fergal used his skills to organize two aid trucks to help people in Ukraine, and it was said that this project highlights Fergal’s humanity, generosity of spirit and selflessness, which made him a very worthy recipient of the award for an individual. that makes a real difference.

Certificates of Recognition

Jacqueline Mullan – Carrowshee Park/Sylvan Hill Community Association. Jackie has been involved with the association since its inception in 2001 in all activities, her greatest impact being with children and young people in the area.

Ellie Annon – Magheraveely Community Development Association. Ellie has gone to great lengths to consult with local people and then plan a range of activities and programs with a particular focus on arts and crafts for all ages.

Oliver McLaughlin – Erne East Community Partnership and Newtownbutler Community Development Association. Oliver was nominated for the key role he played in the development and ongoing work of the Erne East Community Partnership. He also played a central role in the development of the Courthouse Community Center in Newtownbutler as a key community centre.

Malcolm Glenn – South East Fermanagh Foundation. Malcolm was nominated for his extensive volunteer efforts and the use of his skills in developing the SEFF housing estates project which now has over 40 work plots.

George Cathcart – Bellanaleck Community Group. George was nominated for his work with Bellanaleck Community Group since its inception with a particular focus on environmental improvements.

Ross Corrigan – Boho Community Association. Ross was nominated for his work with the Boho Community Association and as a founding member of the Boho Youth Club, which offers a wide range of activities for young people in the Boho community.

Irene Davis – Kesh Evergreens. Irene has been nominated for her work with Kesh Evergreens since 2004, having served as president for 18 years before recently retiring.

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