Ireland's Eye: What's going on in the old sod
The campaign for the forgotten Irish in Britain was launched six months ago by travel website www.lookaroundireland.com, and set a deadline of St. Patrick’s Day to raise ***1 million for two charities which help the forgotten Irish.
By St. Patrick’s Day, however, just over ***2,000 was donated to the online charity, despite the website receiving more than 3,000 hits each day.
The Safe-Home Project is based in St Brendan’s Village Center in Mulranny. It organizes the return of older Irish people to live out their lives in their assisted living center. It was hoped that this latest campaign would enable them to extend the center to cater for the demand from people using the facilities.
At present, the organization has 1,037 people on a waiting list to return home to Ireland.
Dr. Jerry Cowley of the SafeHome Project said that the current economic circumstances make it a challenging time for charities.
“I can understand why people are a little reluctant to give money. People don’t have as much as they once did and we have to accept that,” he said.
He added that the campaign to resettle Irish men and women who have fallen on hard times continues, as does its work in Irish communities in the U.K.
Kerry Jobless Worries
THE government has been accused of failing young people in Kerry as live register figures in the county edge ever closer to the 17,000 mark.
A total of 16,993 people were signing on in Kerry in February -- up by 75 on the previous month -- with figures at the center in Killarney alone rising by 66 to a total of 3,576.
Figures released by the Central Statistics Office reveal that five of the Kerry live register centers registered an increase in the numbers signing on during February, with just Tralee and Kenmare seeing any reductions.
The continuing rise in the live register figures in Kerry have been slammed by Councilor Toiréasa Ferris, who has called for immediate government action to address the soaring levels of unemployment in Kerry.
She warned that the combination of soaring unemployment among under 25s and the slashing of their welfare entitlements is forcing many young people to emigrate. For those who cannot leave, the only option is to remain on the dole.
"These people want to work yet the government is content for them to sit at home," Ferris stated.
"Many of them have skills that can and should be used to rebuild the economy. Nobody wants a return to a situation where the best and the brightest are forced to leave yet by cutting dole payments for the under 25s, the government has ensured that this is exactly what will happen," she added.
Meanwhile, business organization ISME has revealed that 204 redundancies have been enforced in Kerry in the first three months of 2010, leaving families around the county struggling to cope.
ISME described figures as a worrying indication that the economy is still on the slide, with concerns that the situation will continue to deteriorate within the small business sector unless actions are taken to avoid further damage to the sector.
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