Dublin city groups win at all-Ireland community awards

by Gazette Reporter
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Dublin community groups triumphed at the prestigious Pride of Place community awards on Saturday evening at a gala ceremony in city’s Clayton Hotel.

Four groups went home with prizes on the night.

District 7 Community Alliance based in the Mountjoy, Broadstone and Dorset Street area won the ‘Community Resilience’ category, edging out St. Munchin’s Community Centre in Limerick.

Judges commented on District 7’s “collaborative and dedicated ability to identify solutions to rejuvenate a much-loved city area through many laudable activities ranging from litter management to festivals.”

Also taking an award on the night was Raheny Village which claimed the top prize in the Urban Village with a population over 3,000 category.

The judges said they “noted strong evidence of a united purpose between groups and genuine care for the vulnerable.”

“This urban village was presented as a welcoming place, proud of what it has to offer and a community that cares for its environment and is working to address climate change,” they added.

Dublin Lord Mayor Caroline Conroy Presents Raheny Village with their award for winning the Urban Neighbourhoods over 3,000 category.

Blanchardstown was declared the best ‘Urban Neighbourhood’, drawing praise for working “extremely hard to maximise the value they get from the facilities that are available. They made a very positive and enthusiastic presentation to the judges who were very impressed by what they have achieved to date and their plans for the future.”

Blanchardstown was declared the best ‘Urban Neighbourhood’ on the night.

Claiming a special award on the night was Inchicore for their use of outdoor spaces to build community cohesion.

Representatives of the Inchicore community collect their special award

The awards, hosted by RTE’s Marty Whelan, took place in in front of 400 community volunteers from across the island. The awards were delivered in partnership with Dublin City Council.

Sponsored by IPB Insurance, the Pride of Place competition was initiated 20 years ago though a Co-operation Ireland programme to acknowledge the invaluable work undertaken by volunteers and those involved in local community development. 

It has grown into the largest competition recognising community development achievements on the island of Ireland.

President Michael D. Higgins, who is Joint Patron of Co-operation Ireland, said the awards played an important role. 

“The Pride of Place awards are a most important initiative, reminding us that creating societies that are ethical and inclusive is a task for all of our citizens, of all ages and circumstances.”

Pride of Place founder and Chairman Tom Dowlingsaid, “It is 20 amazing years since the very first awards ceremony and the ethos of the awards has never changed. It continues to be about acknowledging and recognising in a meaningful manner the important caring work of all our communities as they continue their daily journey of making the path of life easier for all.”

Dr Christopher Moran, Chairman of Co-operationIreland said, “Co-operation Ireland has no other programme that embodies the charity’s ethos better than Pride of Place.

“We work to build relationships across the island and Pride of Place plays a critical role in that work.  The impact the awards have had in towns and villages across the island since they started 20 years ago cannot be underestimated, and the continuing success of the awards is down to the dedicated volunteers and their love of where they live.

George Jones Chairman, IPB Insurance said. “On behalf of our local authority members we are proud to be associated with the Pride of Place awards as title sponsors. This competition provides a fitting platform to recognise the great strides volunteers across the island of Ireland are making in building more sustainable and liveable communities.”

Main Image: District 7 Community Alliance is awarded with the prize for winning the Community Resilience category.

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