Vital role of Focus in the West Cork community highlighted at Open Morning

Posted on: 9th October, 2017

Category: News

Contributor: West Cork People

Minister Jim Daly TD was on hand to support the National Learning Network Focus Programme during its Open Morning at the Supervalu Complex in Clonakilty on Monday, September 11.

The Focus programme offers rehabilitative training to those who are dealing with mental health difficulties, anxiety and isolation, among other personal issues.

A 12-month programme, it is beginning with a new group of students who will work towards developing wellbeing and recovery strategies, stress management, confidence building, self-advocacy, as well as organising and pursuing cultural and leisure activities outside of the centre.

In October, the group will be participating in the Meitheal Mara boat-building project outside Cork City.

In dealing with mental health issues, many people find the need to try and re-establish connections with the community, build routines and meet peers in an atmosphere conducive to wellbeing. Working at your own pace, this person-centred approach to training has proven successful time and again for the almost one hundred students who have gone through the Focus programme in Clonakilty over the past six years.

The programme does not offer clinical support but the support of a team of instructors, as well as support from the Rehabilitation Officer.

Attended by members of the public and the health services, including Professor Smyth, Executive Clinical Director of West Cork Mental Health Services, the Open Morning proved a huge success.

Minister Jim Daly spoke about the ‘light bulb moment’ that we all crave: looking for that sense of direction. He congratulated all involved in delivering a programme, as vital as Focus is in the West Cork area.

Enquiries to Focus Clonakilty Lee/Elva 087 2316919.

l-r: Elva Barron, Lee Cole, Professor Marcellino Smyth, Jim Daly TD, Fiona Brennan, Toufik Messabih, Mary Russell at the NLN Open Day in Cloankilty.

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13th April, 2018  ·  

An evening on the 'Balance of Feeling Good' by Clonakilty Gaa Club Health and Wellbeing Committee followed by Guest Speaker, Cork GAA Chairperson, Tracey Kennedy.

Paddy Duggan, former Principal of Clonakilty Community College, will be MC on the night, facilitating a discussion on getting the balance of feeling good.
Contributors on the night are Colm Sheehy, Conor Murray, David Lowney, Denis Murphy, Eoghan Deasy, Sean McEvoy, Thomas Clancy and Treasa O'Brien.
Topics covered will range from awareness and responsibility to yourself and others to the benefits of exercise and nutrition.
The evening is suitable for everyone aged 16 and over from players, members of the community, parents of young and adolescent children, etc.

This is a public event, free of charge and everyone is invited and very welcome to attend.
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12th April, 2018  ·  

The Cast of Harold Pinter’s ‘No Man’s Land’ are on their way to the All-Ireland finals, having won 26 awards, including five best of Festivals, at the Amateur Drama League of Ireland annual three act festivals. The play ‘No Man’s Land, by Harold Pinter, the Nobel Prize Winning Author is directed by Jennifer Williams.

One last opportunity to view this multi award winning play at Skibbereen Town Hall, on Saturday 14th of April, before the finals.

Having met by chance in a pub, two aging writers continue a long night of drinking and reminiscing in a stately London home. As the night wears on, their conversation wanders through memories long forgotten or invented. Is their encounter real or a delusion? Are they strangers or do they share a past history? When unexpected guests intrude upon an increasingly surreal evening, the atmosphere quickly changes from friendly to threatening, and the encounter becomes a game of survival.

Tickets may be purchased at the door or in advance by emailing

For more information please contact
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