Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Arthur Guinness Fund - 'My Good News, My Guinness'

The Arthur Guinness Fund has joined forces with Sile Seoige, Alan Brogan, Baz Ashmawy, Jamie Heaslip and Shane Horgan, to share the good news of the projects benefiting from the Arthur Guinness Fund. Each of them will follow the progress of a specific project, and report back on a variety of milestones and good news updates via video messages and personal updates on the Guinness Ireland Facebook.

Activities that have already benefited from the Arthur Guinness Fund include:
* Failte Isteach with a national office in Meath has grown from 22 to 33 English language centres in three months
* Speedpak based in Clonshaugh, has provided FETAC level 4 qualifications to 40 people
* Pieta House has opened two new support locations in Limerick and Ballyfermot in Dublin
* GIY Ireland has increased its GIY groups in towns around Ireland by 13 since June to a total of 82 groups
* Growing Locally has recruited their first fifteen people for a yearlong training programme - the programme is underway
* Camara has opened computer recycling centres in Belfast and Galway

Speaking today Jamie Heaslip, who will be reporting back on the achievements of Camara Education, an organisation that reuses computers for educational purposes in Africa, said, “The work these different projects do is so inspiring. It is amazing how one simple idea can benefit a whole generation. I am really looking forward to following the journey of my old PC through Camara’s online tracking system as it makes its way to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia in the coming months.”

Meanwhile, RTE presenter and DJ Baz Ashmawy added “I signed my name in support of the Arthur Guinness Fund to help raise €2.5 million, so I am delighted to have this opportunity to show just where that money is going. My chosen project, Failte Isteach, does fantastic work uniting Irish people with those from other cultures, with the common goal of teaching and learning English.”

Dublin Football captain, Alan Brogan will be providing regular updates on the work carried out by Speedpak. Based in Clonshaugh, this innovative company has developed a Workplace Accreditation scheme, which captures workplace learning and skills development and converts them into a recognised education qualification in the form of a full FETAC level 4.

Meanwhile Irish Rugby star, Shane Horgan will be getting in touch with his green fingers whilst working alongside GIY (Grow It Yourself), a network of online and community based groups from all over Ireland who are committed to encouraging more and more people to grow their own food. The groups meet regularly to share information learn from each other and exchange tips, ideas and produce.

Radio and TV presenter, Sile Seioge who is also lending her support to the Arthur Guinness Fund, will be sharing Anam Cara’s good news. Anam Cara offers help and comfort for bereaved parents and siblings, through their loss. Since receiving the funding, Anam Cara has set up a sibling support group enabling them to deliver a schedule of support presentations nationally for bereaved parents.

The Arthur Guinness Fund 2010 Awardees were:
* Anam Cara – bereavement support service focusing on the needs of parents and siblings
* Camara – re-using technology to tackle global waste and education in disadvantaged areas
* Growing Locally – training people on low incomes to grow their own produce and improve their diet and exercise
* Fáilte Isteach – supporting older people to make a difference especially within migrant communities
* Grow It Yourself – promoting and encouraging food growing skills and the sharing of knowledge
* Kanchi – driving best practice in the inclusion of people with disabilities within society
* Pieta House – service focused on suicide prevention and intervention in a supportive environment
* Rediscover Fashion – recycling textiles establishing a new generation of eco-conscious socially aware consumers
* Speedpak WAM – a social enterprise providing employment and up-skilling for the long term unemployed
* Suas – a Service Learning Programme for young Irish people to help them become the leaders of the future

The Arthur Guinness Fund Globally
The Arthur Guinness Fund, which was born out of Guinness’ 250th celebrations, is a recognisation of the original social entrepreneur of his day, Arthur Guinness. Since establishing the Arthur Guinness Fund in 2009, a total of €7.4m has been invested in the Fund. This figure includes the €2.5m allocated to the Arthur Guinness Fund in Ireland. Guinness has also invested in some remarkable projects in Africa, Indonesia, United States and the UK. Most recently, Guinness announced a global partnership with Ashoka to enable the deployment of the funds to new social entrepreneurial projects around the world.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Ballygowan 'Think Pink' Week

This week (14th – 20th February) is "Think Pink Week" in support of Breast Cancer Awareness and the Marie Keating Foundation, with thanks to Ballygwowan Pink. Throughout the week Ballygowan Pink are encouraging people to raise awareness and get behind this worthy cause by ‘Thinking Pink’ in aid of the Marie Keating Foundation.

Above, sporting stunning pink dresses courtesy of Covet (Powerscourt Centre, Dublin), models Sarah McGovern and Emily MacKeogh kicked off Think Pink Week. The girls, College students and office workers all over the country will be ‘Thinking Pink’ this week, by wearing a pink accessory or by sporting a pink outfit, to show their support and help raise funds for the Marie Keating Foundation.

For those of us who don't have any pink to wear Ballygowan Pink is encouraging us to ‘Think Pink’ by choosing the pink Ballygowan bottle which is now a permanent part of the Ballygowan range. So by simply choosing pink people can make a difference and help raise awareness for breast cancer.

Lillian McGovern, CEO, the Marie Keating Foundation said, “While breast cancer remains the most common cancer in women in Ireland, the good news is that survival rates are improving both overall and for all age groups. A large contributing factor to this is an increase in breast awareness and early detection so we are calling on people to ‘Think Pink’ and show their support this week.”

Working closely with the Marie Keating Foundation, Ballygowan continues to raise awareness of breast cancer and highlighting the importance of early detection. Ballygowan Pink has already raised over 200K for the Marie Keating Foundation and will continue to raise much needed awareness throughout the year.

Ballygowan was at the IFTAs on Saturday to generate awareness and support from the stars and they got some amazing video footage featuring Kim Cattrall, Pierce Brosnan plus lots lots more. Check it out, it's well worth a watch, with Kim singing at the end!!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Carphone Warehouse: I Just Called to Say I Love You

The nature of how people communicate has changed in the last twenty years in ways that no one could have predicted. So when it comes to a day like today, built around telling someone special exactly how you feel, there are now a multitude of public, private, digital and non-diital ways to do it. What may surprise you is that a poll conducted by The Carphone Warehouse has revealed that 53% of people use their mobile phone to say I love you on St. Valentine's Day.

The poll also revealed:

  • Only 2% of people favour a traditional love letter to say “I love you”
  • 20% of people have sent a saucy text to the wrong person
  • 89% of people would not break up with someone via text or in an email
  • Flowers are the most popular gift to buy online (36%) for a loved one on Valentine’s Day, with DVD’s and CD’s the next most popular online gifts
  • The gift people most covet is the iPad, with the iPhone and other smartphones following closely behind
Taking the last point to heart (pardon the pun), Carphone Warehouse have announced that they will be offering a FREE selected Pre Pay phone to anyone that buys the Nokia C7 on O2 Bill pay.

Visit www.carphonewarehouse.ie for more information.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Kildare Village & The Dublin Chinese New Year Festival 2011

Kildare Village will play a key role this year in the Dublin Chinese New Year Festival, which is taking place from today, Thursday (3rd February), until Sunday next (13th February). Events are a fascinating mix of Chinese culture and heritage, and Kildare Village will be marking the start of the Year of the Rabbit in spectacular style with Chinese arts and entertainment from a host of home-grown artists.

The festivities at Kildare Village will take place next weekend (12th - 13th February) with a number of traditional and contemporary entertainment acts such as vibrant and energetic Lion and Dragon Dance displays and traditional Chinese kite-making classes for the whole family to enjoy. Se sure to don your finest red fashion pieces and head to Kildare Village for a great time.

To help you celebrate the weekend anyone visiting Kildare Village will have the chance to win one of the thousands of prizes by simply picking up a fortune cookie. Ranging from Kildare Village VIP cards to gift vouchers and much more, this is just another reason to pop down to Kildare.

Maria McGovern, Marketing and Retail Director of Kildare Village said, ‘Kildare Village is delighted to be involved with the Dublin Chinese New Year Festival again this year. It’s an opportunity for our customers to celebrate experience and engage in Chinese culture, while also being a great family day out. Supporting the Dublin Chinese New Year allows us to further extend our offering as a cultural and shopping destination for shoppers and tourists alike and we look forward to welcoming new visitors to Kildare Village.’

Declan Hayden,
Dublin Chinese New Year Festival Director, at Dublin City Council agrees that the collaboration has again been a success, “We at the Chinese New Year festival are delighted to be working with Kildare Village again this year and hosting a weekend of Chinese festivities. Kildare Village is a popular shopping destination among the Chinese community in Ireland and we are proud to partner with them on such a unique cultural event”.