Social enterprise launch for Irish language child care centre

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Image:  Parents and children let go of balloons to celebrate 25 years of community and Irish language services at Ionad Uíbh Eachach in west Belfast and the launch of  the organisation as a social enterprise

A west Belfast organisation, celebrating its 25th anniversary, officially launched its Irish language child care centre as a social enterprise today (June 24).

Ionad Uibh Eachach, a community and family centre located off the Falls Road, was launched Gaelchúram with the help of Junior Minister Jennifer McCann and Northern Ireland Children’s Commissioner Koulla Yiasouma.

Pictured here are (from left), back row: Ann Curley, Gaelchúram, Sue Pentel, Ionad Uíbh Eachach, Koulla Yiasouma, Childrens Commissioner. Front row: Anne-Marie McKee Parent, Marion McParland, Gaelchúram, Lauren Smyth and Marie Meredith Gaelchúram

Back row: Ann Curley, Gaelchúram, left, with Sue Pentel, Ionad Uíbh Eachach and Koulla Yiasouma, Children’s Commissioner. Front row: Anne-Marie McKee Parent, Marion McParland, Gaelchúram, Lauren Smyth and Marie Meredith Gaelchúram

“Our organisation has accomplished so much in the past 25 years – we are all about building an Irish language community around children and families and providing a great start for young children. The social enterprise, which employs more than 30 local people, will support the hard work and great projects that we will continue to develop for the people of the area. Gaelchúram, quality daycare through Irish, lies at the heart of building a more sustainable organisation,” said Sue Pentel, Co-Ordinator, Ionad Uíbh Eachach.

Childcare and day care through Irish developed in response to local demand but has grown so quickly that it has now been formed as a social enterprise at the heart of the organisation with a new name, Gaelchúram, reflecting the quality of care that children receive at the centre. It will continue to provide affordable, flexible childcare and support all the community aims of the charity.

Gaelchúram provides quality child-centred Irish-speaking day care for 84 children aged 0-4 and for 60 primary school aged children.

 

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