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Conference Report 2012

29 May 12


Full Conference Programme

Workshop & Discussion Group Feedback

Presentation on Intergenerational Project in Enniscorthy

A most successful Conference was hosted by Wexford Local Development in conjunction with Co Wexford Age Equality Network on Tuesday 22nd May at the Riverside Park Hotel.

The theme of this years Conference was Active Citizenship as we Age – in recognition of 2012 – the European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations and was attended by older peoples groups from throughout County Wexford.

Sean Kinsella, Chairman of Wexford Age Equality Network opened the Conference and gave the attendance a flavour of the very extensive Programme for the day which included workshops, entertainment, presentations and information tables.

Guest Speaker Kathleen Lynch, Minister for Disability, Equality, Mental Health & Older People gave a warm, personal address very much endearing her to the large, diverse gathering. She reported that only 4.5% of Irish people are in residential care with a whacking 95.5% of oler people living independently in their communities assisted by friends, family, neighbours and other support systems.

Ronan Toomey National Coordinator for the European Year for Active Ageing & Solidarity between Generations said that his priorities over the year were to build awareness of the huge contribution that older people are making and can make to society and to promote activities that defeat ageism and negative attitudes towards ageing. He went on to say that it is all about encouraging people to participate to whatever extent they can in Arts, Leisure, Community, Cultural, Sporting and Social activity.

Brian Kehoe CEO of Wexford Local Development said it was wonderful to see such a good turnout for the Conference and he paid special tribute to the Staff of WLD particularly Marie Louise Byrne for all their hard work in preparing such an informative and varied Programme. He said that WLD were delighted to be associated with the Conference and would continue to work with and assist the many groups and organisations in the county who are doing such wonderful work with and for older people.

Kieran Donohoe CEO FDYS made an excellent presentation of how younger and older people can come together to learn from each other – an exercise which culminates in mutual admiration and respect.

Further developing the solidarity between the generations were Cassie O`Leary from Colaiste Brid and Joe Byrne from Good Counsel who read articles by Eva Farrell of Loreto Wexford empathising with many of the existing problems for people as the age.

The entertainment provided was excellent with a thought provoking drama in the medium of shadow puppetry from Respond Get Vocal Project, Waterford and a special Bealtaine performance called From Three to Eighty Three with pre-schoolers, transition year students and older people from Clonroche Community Playgroup and South End Resource Group Wexford performing some lovely old time favourites together like Daisy, Daisy and Way Down in the County Kerry.

The well constructed Programme included 4 Workshops –

1. Men Don’t Talk Face to Face, They Talk Shoulder to Shoulder facilitated by Conor Dervan Irish Mens Shed Assoc and Maria Nolan GAA Social Initiative.
2. What Kind of Old Do You Want To Be – facilitated by Ciaran McKinney, Age & Opportunity, and Orlaith Rowe WLD.
3. Caring In Our Communities – facilitated by Linda Ryan of St. Louis Day Care Centre and Carsten Kohl HSE.
4. Getting Vocal – facilitated by Ann Dunne of On Track and Sean Dillon Older & Bolder.

Kevin Molly Vice Chair of Wexford Age Equality Network recorded the interesting feedback from the Workshops and Chairman Sean Kinsella closed the Conference with the hope that those who attended were going home tired but happy with lots to hope for and dream about long into the future.

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Co Wexford Age Equality Network
c/o Wexford Local Development
Mill Park Road
Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford