News » Archived News 2007

Lord Mayor's Civic Awards 2007 and Community & Volountary Awards 2007

The Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. Michael Ahern, presented the Civic Awards and the Community & Voluntary Awards at a special function in the City Hall on Thursday, 17th May 2007.

The Lord Mayor honoured six of Cork’s citizens with a Civic Award who were chosen by the Lord Mayor in recognition of their contribution to life in Cork, each of which was presented with a Scroll and a Medallion.

The Community & Voluntary Awards were established in 2004 to provide recognition for groups which, through their commitment to voluntary and community activities, have played a significant role in enhancing the quality of life of their communities. The 2007 Awards were sponsored by The Evening Echo and Express Kitchens and Floors.

Addressing the large gathering, the Lord Mayor said it was a privilege for him to make these presentations to people who through their work and unselfish attitude have improved the quality of life in Cork. “Though gathered from a varied and diverse range of interests, sports and artistic endeavours the thing all tonight’s recipients have in common is our admiration, support and no small amount of gratitude. In a time when it has been said that people are interested only in accumulating material possessions and furthering their own needs, sometimes to the detriment of others, it is inspirational and humbling to see the selfless and tireless work undertaken by voluntary and community organisations across the length and breadth of this city. That people are prepared to give of their time, energy and money for no better reason than it is the right thing to do, gives us an insight in to the best of what we, as people, can be.”


Lord Mayor’s Civic Awards – Recipients 2007

Fr. James McSweeney for outstanding leadership at Community and Parish level.Michael O’Flynn for his exceptional contribution to the development of Cork.Garda Patricia O’Riordan for promoting interculturalism in the city.Bernice Glavin for being a source of inspiration through her writings and poetry.Cara O’Sullivan for being an outstanding soprano and exceptional performer. Proinnsías Ó Murchú  in recognition of his service to G.A.A. administration.

Lord Mayor’s Community & Voluntary Awards 2007

Over the past three years more than 300 groups representing the diversity of community and voluntary acitivity in Cork have been nominated for a Lord Mayor’s Community & Voluntary Award, and €25,000 in prizemoney has been shared between 33 groups throughout the city.

Arts & Culture

Winner: Snippets Historical, Cultural and Drama Group
Runner-up: Cork Music Works

Children and Youth

Winner: St. Vincent’s Guide Unit
Runner-up: Friends of Ward 2D

Community & Neighbourhood Services

Winner: South Parish Community Association
Joint Runners-up: Cork City North Citizens & Togher Meals on Wheels

Equality and Social Inclusion

Winner: Sick Poor Society
Runner Up: Wallaroo Play Group


Winner: Glen Amateur Boxing Club
Joint Runners-up: Rockmount AFC & Harbour Point Special Olympics


Further information on the Civic Award Recipients 2007

Fr. James McSweeney For outstanding leadership at Community and Parish level.

Fr. James McSweeney is based in St.Oliver’s Church, Ballyvolane and has been working in the Ballyvolane/Dublin Hill area since 2001. Prior to that  Fr. James was in Ballinlough parish for six years. Fr. James has brought a youthful approach to all we believe in. James has a simple down to earth faith that is rooted in his love of nature and the countryside. He has always  believed in nurturing, sharing and promoting good news. This is the heart of the gospel message and is at the heart of his work as a priest. He  believes strongly in teamwork and nurturing peoples many different talents particularly young people. James works  quietly away but with great energy and determination. Such energy and  enthusiasm can only come from a man who is close to God and someone who believes in the great goodness, love and  potential of each person in his community. Fr.James is also involved in many fundraising events for charity, a Yearly Calendar, a live animal Christmas crib and a website.


Bernice Glavin for being a source of inspiration through her writings and poetry.

Bernice Glavin is from Wilton in Cork. She attended St. Catherine’s NS and Mount Mercy College before becoming a student nurse at the Mercy Hospital, now the Mercy University Hospital. Following diagnosis with breast cancer in late 2005 she wrote The Journey and while the inspiration for her book came from her experiences as a cancer patient, her writing also reflects her close observation of people and of sharing in the daily lives of patients and their family members. She has spent most of her life as a staff nurse at the Intensive Care Unit of the MUH and, in that  capacity over the years, came very close to seriously ill patients and also to their families. As a young nurse Bernice took up the challenge of running and, to date (April 2007), has run 46 marathons. She says that the  training and the discipline of marathon running helped her to meet the many challenges of  cancer diagnosis and the year of treatment and rehabilitation that followed. After recovering from her cancer experience she returned to the MUH to work in the Coronary Care Unit. Bernice lives in Wilton and has a daughter, Kate. Bernice is herself the  eldest of four daughters of Dick and Cassie Cross.


Michael O’Flynn for exceptional contribution to the development of Cork.

Michael is Chairman and M.D. of the O'Flynn Group which comprises O’Flynn Construction, one of the largest property and construction firms in Ireland. Landmark developments in Cork include, The South Bank / Deanshall scheme in Crosses Green, The development of No. 5 & 6 Lapp’s Quay a link to the emerging docklands, the development of the former Army Barracks of Ballincollig and their latest landmark development, The Elysian beside the City Hall. Residential developments include Mount Oval in Rochestown, ParkGate in Frankfield and Greenfields in Ballincollig. A graduate of C.I.T. Michael is a Director of the Children’s Medical & Research Foundation in Crumlin, a Director of the Cork University Foundation Board and former Chair of the C.I.F. Southern Region. He is married to Joan and they have four children, Michelle, Shane, Kate & Elaine. He has a life long interest in sport, he played hurling for his local club, Éire Óg, and for the Muskerry division. Michael is involved in providing voluntary help and expertise to a number of different bodies. Recently he was appointed by Bishop Buckley to produce a report on the future use of Farranferris College. He is also involved on the Boards of The Children’s Medical & Research Foundation in Crumlin and Cork University Foundation and his company sponsors many cultural, community and sporting events.


Garda Patricia O’Riordan for promoting interculturalism in the City.

Patricia joined An Garda Síochána in 2003 and worked as a student garda in Limerick City. She was transferred to the Bridewell Garda Station in Cork in 2004 where she performed regular duties until she joined the Community Policing Section in Anglesea St. Garda Station in 2006. In that short period of time she has established herself as an exceptional Ethnic Liaison Officer with a natural talent and personality for dealing with people. She has made great strides in reaching out to the members of the New Communities and has worked hard at promoting interculturalism in the City. She is a credit to the Force and is well respected by her colleagues in all ranks.


Proinnsías Ó Murchú in recognition of his service to G.A.A. administration.

Proinnsías Ó Murchú is a native of Ballinlough and resides at the original  family home. He is a Graduate of U.C.C. and a former Secondary School Teacher at Sullivans Quay C.B.S. and Coláiste Iognáid Rís. Proinnsías was Secretary of Blackrock National Hurling Club before being appointed as Secretary of the Cork Co. Board of the G.A.A. in December 1972. Proinnsías was a Selector of 16 All Ireland winning teams. As a  prominent Referee, he has refereed two All-Ireland Senior Hurling Finals 1971 and 1981, an All-Ireland Minor Hurling Final, among many others. Proinnsías was one of the two Referees who controlled the first ever Compromise Rules International between Ireland and Australia in 1984. He has also refereed Games in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Australia and New Zealand. Pairc Uí Chaoimh was developed, and Pairc Uí Rinn acquired and developed, during his time as County Secretary. Proinnsías has served as Chairman of several National Committees of the G.A.A.. He has undertaken an expansive Lecture Tour on ‘Irish Sports’ (Gaelic Games) in Universities and Irish Centres in the U.S.A.


Cara O’Sullivan for being an exceptional performer with outstanding vocal talent.

Cara O’Sullivan has become an artist with an impeccable operatic pedigree and has risen to prominence as one of Ireland’s leading sopranos. She is an instinctive performer with a remarkably full voice, exciting and dramatic, yet always performs with great sensitivity.She has shown herself to be a fearless vocal artist, whether singing Mozart, Verdi, Donizetti or Puccini. Cara’s concert career has taken her all over the world, spanning an impressive and wide-ranging repertoire.  Engagements in the 2007/08 season include oratorio performances of Mendelssohn’s Paulus and Haydn’s Nelson Mass in Dublin; Verdi’s Requiem with the RTE National Symphony Orchestra; a series of song recitals in Britain and Ireland. Cara’s debut CD, CARADIVA, has raised over €250,000 for her favourite charity, Marymount Hospice in Cork.


Further  information on the Community & Voluntary Awards 2007 winners/runners-up

Joint Runner Up: Sport

Rockmount AFC
Founded in 1924 Rockmount AFC has a long tradition of providing football coaching for young people from the northside of the city. They cater for a wide range of age groups - with under 9s, junior and senior teams.  One of their most famous former players is Roy Keane, who joined when he was just 9 years old. Roy played with Rockmount until he was 18 and was part of a Rockmount team that won the league and cup double five years in a row.  Rockmount AFC has a dedicated team of volunteers who not only coach and train players, but also cut the grass, mark pitches, clean out dressing rooms, put up goal nets and use their own cars to drive the young players to Rockmount’s playing and training pitches in Whitechurch. 

Joint Runner Up: Sport

Harbour Point Spcial Olympics Golf Society
For the past 11 years Harbour Point Special Olympics Golf Society has worked with people with learning disabilities, providing an opportunity for people with special needs to play and enjoy the sport of golf.  The club is run by a small group of volunteers who train participants on a weekly basis. The club competes annually in the Munster Region Special Olympics Championships and was the proud winner of  4 gold, 3 silver and 2 bronze medals at the World Summer Games in Dublin in 2003.

This summer will be a busy one for the club as 2 of its golfers will be representing Ireland at this year’s World  Summer Special Olympic Games in China. Meanwhile over 100 golfers with special needs will take part in the All Ireland Inter Regional Golf Event which will be hosted by the Harbour Point Golf Club in June. 

Winner: Sport

Glen Amateur Boxing Club
Re-formed in 1976 the Glen Amateur Boxing Club  coaches young boys and girls from age 10 years and up in the art of self-defence. Young people from The Glen compete in provincial and national championships with some going on to box at international level. The club has a proud track record with two boys set to represent their country at international level later this year as well as two boxers defending the titles they won last year in the 2006 National Intermediate Championships.

The club has a great group of volunteers who help in every way possible as well as two dedicated coaches, all of whom are working to ensure the club goes from strength to strength. 


Runner Up: Equality and Social Inclusion

Wallaroo Play School
The Wallaroo Playschool provides a range of services for children and parents – including parent toddler groups, childcare support, parenting courses and after school groups.  In 2005 Wallaroo extended its services to two accommodation centres for asylum seekers which cater for families with children. Prior to Wallaroo starting work in these centres opportunities for play were very limited.  Now with the support of Wallaroo’s team of childcare workers the children get to play and learn in a safe environment, and are more ready to be integrated into the school system and into Irish community life.

Winner: Equlaity & Social Inclusion

Sick Poor Society
Founded in 1853 to look after the needs of the less well off, the Sick Poor Society is one of the oldest charitable societies in Cork. It still works to provide financial and other supports to those in need across the city. Last year the Cork branch of the Sick Poor Society distributed over €112,000 in cash and coal and its members made over 3,000 family visits. Its work is carried out confidentially and without publicity, and is funded through house to house collections, donations and bequests.    


Runner Up: Art & Culture

Cork Music Works
Cork Music Works is a pioneering organisation which develops new ways for musicians to work with people with disability and stages public performances with quality production values. Using new enabling technology and creative ways of working  Cork Music Works provides workshops and performance opportunities for people with disability. In its many public performances Cork Music Works often collaborates with groups such as the Cork Pops Orchestra, Cork Youth Orchestra and School of Music Jazz Big Band. Earlier this year the group gave its first performance outside Cork when it performed in the RDS in Dublin with students of the Dublin Conservatory of Music. 

Winner: Art & Culture

Snippets Historical & Cultural Drama Group
Snippets Historical and Cultural Drama Group is made up of older women (aged 55 – early 70s) from across the city, all of whom are active in their community.  The group performs using music, song, dance, poetry, essay, mime and humour, depending on the theme. They research, write and perform their own material and perform free of charge for various groups and organisations. Each year Snippets performs in the Bealtaine Festival, and have performed north and south of the border for community groups, nursing homes, colleges, churches and clubs. Snippets’ performances are targeted at the less well off in our society, and they encourage audiences to become part of the performance. 


Runner  Up: Children and Youth

Friends of Ward 2D
The Friends of Ward 2D at Cork University Hospital aim to provide support and friendship to the patients of this ward and their families. Composed mainly of family and friends of past patients of Ward 2D the volunteers are familiar with the difficulties of having a loved one in this isolation ward suffering from either leukaemia or a major burns injury. The group provides short breaks for patients and their families, organises visits from leading sports and entertainment personalities, and provides some financial assistance to support patients and families.   

Winner: Children and Youth

St. Vincent's Guide Unit
For the past 34 years St Vincent’s Guide Unit has organised events and activities for girls aged 5 to 15 and upwards. Adult leaders work with the young people teaching them emergency skills, health & fitness as well as instilling  a love of the outdoors and the environment. Many of the present members are second generation, their mothers and aunts having been former members of the unit.   


Joint Runner Up: Community & Neighbourhood Services

Togher Meals On Wheels
Launched in 1978 Togher Meals on Wheels aims to ensure that senior citizens in Togher and those who are unable to do their own cooking get at least one good nourishing hot meal a day. Staffed six days week volunteers prepare, cook and deliver hot meals. Work starts at 9am on preparing the meals, while the volunteer drivers arrive at 11.30 to take their loads and daily list. And then it’s time for cleaning up! Menus vary between the seasons and a group of committed volunteers also cook and deliver on Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day.   

Joint Runner Up: Community & Neighbourhood Services

Cork City North Citizens' Information Service
Through its three citizens information centres in Blackpool, Mayfield and Hollyhill the Cork City North Citizens’ Information Service provides free and easy access to quality information, advice and advocacy on rights and entitlements.  The service is totally confidential and operated by specially trained volunteers who give of their time selflessly in the service of the community.  The service has been revitalised over recent years and seen an upsurge in the number of volunteers at a time when volunteerism has been declining.  This has enabled opening hours to be extended and the development of targeted outreach services to meet the information needs of the elderly, disabled and immigrant population. 

Winner: Community & Neighbourhood Services

South Parish Community Association
Established in 1972 the South Parish Community Association provides a range of services for people in the area.  The association runs the local community centre which is used 7 days a week and most nights until 10pm.  The centre is the hub for the local community – the venue for ballroom dancing, yoga, bridge,  indoor bowls, classes from the College of Commerce as well as prayer groups, acting and senior citizens groups.  Each year the centre hosts the South Parish Over 60s competition.  Volunteers ensure that the centre runs smoothly and have overseen a lot of recent renovation work at the centre.


Communications Section, Cork City Council
Tel: 021 4924472   021 4924676

Community & Enterprise, Cork City Council
Tel: 021 4924703


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