REMOVED GIVES A VOICE TO YOUNG PEOPLE'S EXPERIENCES OF THE NI SOCIAL CARE SYSTEM
30 October 2019
Clanmil Housing Group welcomed local people to short performances of part of the play 'Removed' at the Lillian Bland Centre on the Ballyclare Road, STEP: The Junction in Dungannon,, the Curzon Apartments on the Ormeau road and Bessbrook Community Centre Newry, followed by a post-show discussions.
Michael Brady MP, Cllr Roisin Mulgrew, Clare McCarty Clanmil Group Chief Executive, Sintija Jaunslaviete, Voices For Young People In Care (VOYPIC), Fionnuala Kennedy, The Playwright, Vanessa Haynes, Barnardo's NI and Judith from Home For Good, at Bessbrook Community Centre
Written by Fionnuala Kennedy, 'Removed' is the latest play by award-winning, Belfast based theatre company Prime Cut Productions. It tells the story of Adam, a young person who has grown up in the Northern Irish Social Care system.
"Adam is OK to share his story - really it's alright - it's OK that his life was turned upside down - and the social workers were nice, kinda - and the foster homes, well... and his baby brother Joe?"
'Removed' is based on interviews with young people with care experience who shared their personal stories with the playwright in collaboration with Voice Of Young People In Care (VOYPIC).
Fionnuala Kennedy said: 'Going into the interviews, my knowledge of the care system was really limited. Your ideas are informed by things you've overheard or assume. So we just started from the beginning: when young people are taken into care- that day or night or moment when you're removed from the familiar and brought into a system where it's difficult to have autonomy over your life, because, as a child, things are decided for you'.
Fionnuala continues: "The play is dedicated to all those making the lives of young people in care better - to the staff of VOYPIC and the many other organisations working with these young people, those incredible foster and adoptive parents who change lives every day, the social workers (the good ones!) navigating the system, but mostly, to those extraordinary young people who gave me their time and shared their stories, who are utterly inspiring and making a huge difference for children in care now, and in the future".
Clanmil Housing, Barnardo's NI, Home For Good and Arts & Business NI have partnered with Prime Cut Productions to deliver a series of free workshops, smaller performances of the show and post-show discussions exploring what it really means to be 'in care' and the realities of fostering.
Clare McCarty, Group Chief Executive at Clanmil Housing said: "At Clanmil we believe that everyone should have a good home where they feel safe and valued. We know that for some people that may be with a loving foster family who can provide the stability and support they need to thrive.
"By telling the story of young people in care, the 'Removed' play provides a window to their experiences that can help more people understand the difference that fostering and adoption can make in someone's life. We also hope that the performances and workshops will make people think seriously about whether they could offer a home to a young person who needs one."
Following a run at the Dublin Theatre Festival and the Babaro International Arts Festival in Galway in October, Northern Ireland audiences will get a chance to watch Removed before it heads to Philadelphia where it has been selected to be one of only two shows from the island of Ireland to feature in the renowned IPAY showcase.
Actor, Conor O'Donnell will deliver the intimate monologue at The Strand Arts Centre, Belfast; The Alley in Strabane, The Braid in Ballymena and Down Arts Centre in Downpatrick.
Tickets for Removed are available from The Strand Arts Centre The Braid Alley Theatre and Down Arts Centre
To book Removed Workshops visit Eventbrite http://bit.ly/Removedworkshop
or contact Bobbi-Rai@primecutproductions.co.uk
SPOOKTACULAR EVENT AT BALLINISKA!
30 October 2019
People living in Clanmil Housing's Balliniska Avenue and Heights, have come together to help organise and enjoy a community Halloween party.
The well attended event, was organised by people living at the housing development with the support of Clanmil. Families living at the scheme celebrated the spooky festivities with haunting creepy crawlies, spine-chillingly scary face painting and some frightfully thrilling family-fun activities!
Shauna Hutton, Teagan McClelland, Sarah McClelland and Holly Hutton residents of Balliniska Avenue and Heights
The recently constructed modern build on the Northland Road provides 10 three-bedroom and 4 two-bedroom houses, as well as 8 one-bedroom houses and 44 two-bedroom apartments.
The ghoulish event was a great success, helping build community spirit and providing an opportunity for neighbours get to know each other better.
Sharon Stewart, who lives at Balliniska, had this to say;
'It was a pleasure to organise the activities for the event. The turnout proved just how great the area is to live in. Events like this will help to further develop the lovely community spirit that already exists and we're looking forward to organising more activities to enjoy together. '
Cllr Michael Cooper, who attended the Halloween celebration, said: 'I was delighted to attend the event and meet with local residents. As a new residential development, the residents of Balliniska Avenue and Heights are only getting to know their neighbours, so this event was a great opportunity to do just that. It showcased the positive work that is taking place within the complex involving residents and Clanmil. I'm confident that further successful events will happen in the coming months.'
Tim O'Malley, Community Development Manager at Clanmil said;
'Events like this can make an important contribution to creating a sense of community. Shared experiences can help develop the lasting relationships and true sense of belonging that helps communities thrive'
'What was special about this event was the tenant involvement in making this event the success that it was. We are very excited for what they come up with for the next one!'
CONSTRUCTION CAREER TASTER FOR LOCAL PUPILS
14 October 2019
Pupils from four schools across Newtownabbey and North Belfast have taken part in UK Construction Week, a national campaign that aims to promote careers in the construction industry.
Students from Edmund Rice College, Hazelwood Integrated College, Glengormley High and Abbey Community College at Clanmil's Carnmoney Road Site
Organised by Clanmil Housing Group, and supported by the Department for Communities T:BUC initiative, the event provided young people from years 3 and 4 at Abbey Community College, Hazelwood Integrated, Glengormley High and Edmond Rice schools with an opportunity to come together and find out about the variety and challenge of working in today's modern construction industry through a construction site visit and insights from sector experts.
50 young people visited Clanmil's site at Carnmoney Road in Glengormley where 48 new homes are currently being built.
The young people heard from Joy Scott, Chair at Clanmil about the many different roles and professions that work together in the development process, and from Michael McBride of contractor WJ McBride Construction, architect Chris Campbell of GM Design, Adrian Kerrs of Mills Selig solicitors and David Little about the wide range of careers on offer in the construction industry. Women'sTec, Northern Ireland's largest provider of training for women in non-traditional skills, highlighted the sector as a good career option for women.
Clanmil's Jan Sloan explained why events like this are important. She said: "It's no secret that Northern Ireland is in the grips of a construction skills shortage. While our construction industry has shown signs of growth in recent months, there are concerns that a lack of skilled people could hold us back. At Clanmil we plan to build 400 new homes annually for the next 3 years. It is really important that Northern Ireland has a thriving construction sector to deliver the high quality homes that people so desperately need. That's why we're delighted to be able to offer these young people this unique opportunity to see first-hand just what's involved in the design and construction process and the wide range of exciting careers on offer."
Davy Jackson, Head of the Technology & Design department at Glengormley High School said: 'This is an amazing opportunity to work with Clanmil Housing whose vision is 'Everyone has a Great Home'. As a school, we want nothing more than all of our pupils to have a great education.
"These young people have been able to chat with real people who work in the construction industry.
"Drawing upon the resources and experiences of such a reputable employer will enable us to foster a wonderful relationship to build upon for years to come through further similar initiatives."
Celebrating Blooming Marvellous Gardens at Clanmil
09 10 2019
Celebrating Blooming Marvellous Gardens at Clanmil
Tenants are celebrating their recent success in a Northern Ireland wide gardening competition run by local housing association, Clanmil Housing Group.
Group photo of all the winners at this year's CIanmil In Bloom competition
The competition is run each year by Clanmil to acknowledge and reward those tenants who take a keen interest in keeping the green spaces around their homes looking the very best they can. It also gives tenants with green fingers and a passion for gardening a chance to showcase their handiwork.
Patricia Woodside, Martha McShane and John Hyland from Cullingtree Meadows with Joy Scott, Chair of Clanmil
Residents were presented with their awards by Clanmil Chief Executive, Clare McCarty at a special celebration at The Malone House in Belfast. The event provided an opportunity to highlight all of the hard work that goes into making the gardens at Clanmil housing schemes look first class.
Clare McCarty, Clanmil Group Chief Executive with members of the late George Glenn's family, presenting 'Star Gardener' award to winner Albert Reid. Albert also picked up an award for his neighbour at Clooney Terrace, and joint winner James Moran, who couldn't attend
Cullingtree Meadows, a scheme especially designed for people living with Dementia in Belfast was the Overall Winner. Other winners on the day were Glenshesk Court in Ballycastle for Best Independent Living Scheme, Slemish Court in Ballymena for Best Environmental Garden, Raglan Place in Ballymena for Best Active Older People Scheme and Felden in Newtownabbey won the Best Neighbourhood Scheme.
This year a special award was presented for the first time. 'The George Glenn Star Gardener' Award is dedicated to the memory of George Glenn, a Clanmil tenant and former Chairman of the Clanmil Tenant Forum, who sadly passed away last year. George was devoted to his garden and took much pride in being part of the Clanmil in Bloom competition. His family presented the 'George Glenn Star Gardener' Award, as a tribute to their Father's love of gardening. Albert Reid and James Moran, from Clooney Terrace, in Derry/Londonderry jointly received this award.
Tim O'Malley, Community Development Manager at Clanmil, said;
"This event gives us a chance to celebrate and showcase the handiwork of those tenants with green fingers and a passion for gardening
"Each year the number and standard of Clanmil in Bloom entries increase, and this year the judges had a really hard job choosing the winners from some great entries. Congratulations to everyone at the winning schemes who helped create and maintain their fabulous gardens. We can't wait for next year!"
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