Newtown Men’s Shed

With practical skills, progression can be more tangible.

Initially, Newtownmountkennedy Men’s Shed learnt how to use woodwork equipment safely with tutor Joe Gore; equipment had been donated to the men’s shed but members were not confident about using it.  Once the group had received this training, they could develop group projects and produce practical pieces of woodwork. The group aim to use the pieces they produce as a potential source of funding.

“I am 110% more confident using the equipment now”

Women’s Integrated Network (WIN), Athy

The Headscarf Artistry Training Project was organised by Women’s Integrated Network (WIN), Athy and funded by KWETB Community Education Service. It ran from 21st April to 16th June 2018.
This project was number one on the list from needs analysis consultations facilitated by WIN, Athy to identify existing gaps and needs, and possible solutions towards addressing them. As a result, WIN applied to KWETB for funding to cover both tutor and non-tutor costs. Thankfully, KWETB worked with WIN to ensure a successful outcome.
This training project recorded the best and highest attendance in 6 years. It was so much so that we started with 13 participants and had a waiting list of 14 more. As a result of the high demand and outstanding success, WIN sent in application for a second batch to cater for those on the waiting list.
The success and the positive impact speak for itself because three weeks after the end of the course the graduates held a meet-up to keep their learning fresh while hoping that they would get a go at the advanced stage to further develop to full-fledged economic generation project.

”WIN has outdone itself in this training project as it provided opportunities to learn new lifelong skills, make new friends, become active members of the greater Athy community, de-stress and develop self-worth, thank you”.
WIN on behalf of all the participants and those on the waiting list, would like to thank the Tutor, Bukunola, Conor, Lisa, Susan and KWETB for funding the Headscarf Artistry Training Project.

Springboard Family Support Group, Arklow

For those experiencing mental health issues, or personal and family challenges, Community Education can offer an opportunity for to have “time out” to focus on well-being. Participants have reported that attending a structured class with an informal and friendly learning environment allows them the opportunity to strengthen their resilience.

Facilitator Antoinette Kavanagh recently delivered a course teaching parents stress management techniques to a group in Arklow. She describes her programme as follows:

“The Health and Well-being course is an 8 week long course focused on aspects of parental support and tailored to reduce stress using holistic therapies.
The course contains;
1. Aromatherapy: How essential oils work and their therapeutic actions. Safety when blending and diluting oils. We also make our own products such as cream, oils and mists.
2. Skin Care: An in-depth analysis of the skin. How to care for your skin. Facial skin care using natural ingredients and focusing on different skin types including allergies like dermatitis and eczema (baby).
3. The theory behind therapies such as reflexology, massage and Indian head. Outlining the techniques and physiological and psychological effects and benefits.
4. Introduction to stress management, meditation, mindfulness and yoga poses to encourage relaxation of both body and mind.

This course provides the group with the tools and knowledge to feel more confident and more resilient”.

Wicklow Traveller Women’s Natural Healing Course

During Tutor Anne Shelley-Lacey’s course the women recalled stories about the traditional natural remedies used in the past in traveller culture. Some of the group remembered the herbal remedies used by grandmothers and mothers; traditions recalled but no longer used. One participant said the course “brought the past into the present”.

The group was interested to learn about the general revival of interest in alternative remedies using natural herbs and oils and the group had great fun foraging for herbs in CEART’S (Wicklow Traveller Development Groups) garden. These garden trips encouraged one woman to grow flowers from seeds with her daughter.

One participant was amazed at the progress her daughter made when she used a natural oil to help treat the symptoms of psoriasis. Also, the course explored the health benefits of drinking water and replacing fizzy children’s drinks with natural juices and shakes using berries and fruit.

“We got to appreciate better our own traditions”