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Limerick Women’s Network lobbies Alan Kelly over the future of the service

Members of the Limerick Women's Network with some of the many letters they are posting to Alan Kelly

Members of the Limerick Women's Network with some of the many letters they are posting to Alan Kelly

  • by Nick Rabbitts
 

SUPPORTERS of the Limerick Women’s Network have sent over 300 letters to Environment Minister Alan Kelly in a bid to save the service.

The Limerick Women’s Network, which is based in Sarsfield Gardens, Moyross, exists to help women find work, or return to education.

Among other things, it aims to develop the confidence of women.

However, the service is now under threat of closure, with funding due to be pulled from December 31.

A new system is being set up, but it is subject to complex tendering processes.

As part of a co-ordinated effort nationally, women’s networks have posted thousands of letters to the newly appointed Mr Kelly asking that he find the €1.3m needed to keep the services on the road.

Limerick Women’s Network coordinator Liz Price said the letters - sent at the Watch House Cross post office - come from individual women who have used the service,

Catherine McNamara, a former director of the network, says if it is wound up, it would be a major loss for the women of Limerick.

“I have seen how successful it is towards women at a very local level. I have seen women who have left school early, offered confidence in themselves. What we do different is that we build up their confidence by doing different courses. We make them aware of equality legislation. I’ve seen women come through, go on and get certificate and diploma courses at UL,” she said.

The Greenfields woman has warned jobs are on the line if the service closes.

“We would lose our coordinator and development worker. Two jobs would be gone, but the women themselves would lose all the connections they have access to, just for a small bit of funding,” she said.

Cllr Maurice Quinlivan also lent his support to the letter campaign.

The Sinn Fein councillor’s mother used the network, and he described it as “one of the best projects we have had in the city.”

 

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