2nd December 2021

Welcome to this edition of GCCN Network News. Below we have information on:

GCCN Network News
GCCN Updates
  • GCCN Linkage Group Meetings - read here
  • Upcoming SPCs, JPC and LCDC Meetings - read here
  • Public Sector Equality and Human Rights Duty in Galway City - read here

Events, Initiatives, Workshops and Resources
  • Celebrating International Day of People With Disabilities - read here
  •  #PurpleLights21 - read here
  • Support Samaritans’ Longest Night Campaign - read here
  • The ‘ABC’ for Cleaner Air Awareness Campaign - read here
  • JAM Cards at Galway Public Libraries - read here
  • Rooting Resilience: Panel Discussion and Launch - read here
  • Health & Wellbeing Programmes & Resources - read here
  • Crime Prevention Webinar - Recording - read here
  • Immigrant Detention and Alternatives: Ireland and the EU - Recording - read here

Funding, Awards, Open Calls and Programmes
  • TO BE IRISH AT CHRISTMAS 2021 - read here
  • NTA to Establish Transport User Advisory Group - read here
  • Artist in the Community Scheme Mentoring Award 2022 - read here
  • Welcome to Work Programme - Unemployed Legally Resident Migrants - read here
  • Community Climate Action Programme - Reminder - read here

Have Your Say
  • Survey for Community Groups on Intangible Cultural Heritage in Ireland - read here

COVID-19 Related Updates
  • #LayerUp - Cross-Government Campaign  - read here
  • Updates to Ireland’s COVID-19 Vaccination Programme - read here

  • COVID-19 Community Call Helpline - here
  • Keep Well Campaign - here
  • Support for the Older People - here
  • Community Response Map - here

There are a number of vacancies on the GCCN Secretariat.
All interested members are invited to get in touch at for details and to express an interest.
The next deadline for submitting events and information you wish to share with the GCCN Newsletter is
Tuesday 30th November.

GCCN Network News
GCCN Updates

GCCN Linkage Group Meetings
December 2021

GCCN will hold the following Linkage Group meetings in November:

Meeting Date Link
      Economic Development Linkage Group      
December 8th - 3pm
    Join here   
Arts and Culture Linkage Group
December 9th - 3pm
Join here

If you have queries or agenda suggestions for any of the meetings above please get in touch with Jacinta at

Upcoming SPC and LCDC Meetings
December 2021
The following local structures will be holding meetings as follows:

Meeting Date Details
Joint Policing Committee Thursday
6th December
See details here
Planning SPC Friday
10th December
See details here
Economic, Community and Cultural Development SPC Friday
10th December
See details here
Local Community Development Committee Wednesday
15th December
See details here
Galway Sports Partnership Wednesday
15th December
See details here

If you wish to highlight any issues or make comments relevant to any of the structures above please contact and your suggestions will be communicated to the GCCN representatives.

GCCN is represented on each structure above by the elected GCCN representatives - see here.

Public Sector Equality and Human Rights Duty in Galway City
Launch of Video and Resources
On the 17th of December from 12.30pm – 2pm GCCN will host  Implementing the Public Sector Equality and Human Rights Duty in Galway City via Zoom.


On this occasion, the Civil Society Panel will launch a video and resources on the work done in Galway City.

Download the invite here.
Events, Initiatives, Workshops and Resources

Celebrating International Day of People With Disabilities
3rd December 2021

In celebration of the International Day of People With Disabilities on December 3rd Access for All Galway and FLIRT FM 101.3 are teaming up to air two radio shows this week from 6-8pm.

  1. Thursday, December 2nd: Featuring three actors from multi award-winning Blue Teapot Theatre Company on life during lockdown and new projects being planned.
  1. Friday, December 3rd: Mayor Collette Connolly to address people with disabilities. Followed by ‘Take a Step in My Shoes’, audio recordings revealing what it is like to live in Galway with a disability.

And Flirt FM listeners can expect plenty more surprises!

Awareness Campaign for UN Day for Persons with Disabilities

On December 3rd, you can help turn Ireland purple and join the annual worldwide celebration to mark International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

This year's theme, “Leadership and participation of persons with disabilities toward an inclusive, accessible and sustainable post-COVID-19 world”, will put the spotlight on people with disabilities who lead and participate. 

Check out the resources and information on the Disability Federation Ireland website at the link:

Go Green on the Longest Night 
Support Samaritans’ Longest Night Campaign

Samaritans provide a 24-hour helpline service for people who are in distress, struggling to cope and who are in need of emotional support, including those who are feeling suicidal.

This year Samaritans will mark the Winter Solstice on Tuesday, December 21st with an event called the Longest Night. Samaritans want to let people in need of support know that Samaritans are there for them during their darkest hours, especially over the festive period. Last year the Samaritans volunteers answered over 37,000 calls for help over Christmas. You can help reach these people.

Samaritans are appealing to landmarks, local authorities, and businesses to light up their buildings and outdoor locations in green to support us. Last Winter Solstice several national landmarks took part including Dublin Air Traffic Control, Cork City Hall, and the Rock of Cashel.

Samaritans are asking if you could illuminate in green the exterior of your building/landmark which you manage on Tuesday, December 21st as part of this Christmas Campaign.

For the many public offices and buildings that have LED lighting which can be changed remotely, the code for the colour green Samaritans use is R132 G189 B0, however any shade of green would be welcomed on the night.

You can also highlight your support by using the hashtags #samaritanslongestnight and #longestnight and tagging @GalwaySamaritan/@GalwaySamaritans @SamaritansIRL on your social media. Any images taken of the buildings or landmarks will be shared on Samaritans Ireland and Samaritans Galway Twitter and a press release will also be issued to the media.

Several Samaritans branches across Ireland will also hold candlelight walks and/or carol singing in town centres to reach potential callers locally. This Christmas, more than ever before, people need to know that Samaritans will be there for them 24 hours a day, including Christmas Day. With your support this campaign, when promoted locally and nationally, will highlight the Samaritans service to those who may never have had to contact us before.

Samaritans can be contacted 24 hours a day, seven days a week, on freephone 116 123 or email

For more details please email Una at:
Samaritans Ireland Head Office:

The ‘ABC’ for Cleaner Air
Awareness Campaign to Reduce Air Pollution from Domestic Solid Fuel Fires

The Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications, Eamon Ryan T.D., has announced a public awareness campaign on the ‘ABC’ of Cleaner Air this Winter.

For this heating season, people are being asked to focus on three simple steps – to bring about better air quality and improved health for all by reducing air pollution from domestic fires during the winter ahead.

This campaign's three core messages – the ‘ABC’ for Cleaner Air - are:

  • A – Ask yourself: “Do I need to light a fire?” Use other cleaner heating sources instead if possible.
  • B – Burn cleaner, more efficient, low smoke fuels and make sure you use the right fuel for your appliance.
  • C – Clean and maintain your chimneys and heating appliances at least once a year.
Read more here.

JAM Card Campaign
Available at the Galway Public Libraries
Transport for Ireland along with Bus Éireann, Dublin Bus, Go-Ahead Ireland, Iarnród Éireann, TFI Local Link and Luas are continuing our journey to become JAM Card friendly. JAM Card allows people with a communication barrier to tell others they need ‘Just A Minute’ discreetly and easily.

Galway Public Libraries are the first Library Service in the West of Ireland to have the JAM Card initiative in all branches and mobile library. This exciting addition to the service was formally supported by the City Mayor Cllr. Colette Connolly and the Cathaoirleach of Galway County Cllr. Peter Keaveney.

Read the press release here.
There are 3 message options to choose from:
1) Please be patient, I have autism
2) Please be patient, I have a learning disability/difficulty
3) Please be patient, I have a condition
There are several different methods to get a JAM Card. JAM Cards are also available for collection from the following transport hubs:
Irish Rail Stations:
  1. Connolly Station, Dublin
  2. Pearse Station, Dublin
  3. Heuston Station, Dublin
  4. Kent Station, Cork
  5. Ceannt Station, Galway
  6. Colbert Station, Limerick
  7. Plunkett Station, Waterford
  8. MacDiarmada Station, Sligo
Dublin Bus:
Dublin Bus Head Office, O’Connoll Str
Local Link Offices
You can also request one directly from NOW Group by visiting the JAM Card website and filling out the request form.

Or if you would prefer there is a JAM Card App available for Android and iOS. The App allows you to choose your message option and find other JAM friendly businesses.

Rooting Resilience: Panel Discussion and Launch
December 15th, 2021

As part of Comhlamh’s Erasmus+ funded “Working for a Better World – Sustaining Civic Responses” project, you are warmly invited to a panel discussion that will mark the launch of two new integrative, context-specific psycho-social resources on Wednesday 15th of December from 10.30 am to 12.30pm.

Marking International Volunteer Day 2021, Rooting Resilience: Panel Discussion features Search and Rescue personnel and medics, psycho-social workers and camp volunteers.

The event will also launch two new resources: a ‘Training of Trainers’ manual and psycho-educational Learning Resource, aimed at supporting and sustaining those involved in solidarity-based responses to migration.

You can learn more and register here.

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 Health & Wellbeing Programmes & Resources
December 2021

Information on some current health and wellbeing programmes and resources is outlined in the PDF file here.

The Programmes and Resources included are:

  • Free online Stress Control Programme
  • Free online Minding Your Wellbeing Programme
  • Free online course Managing Stress and Anxiety (40 mins)
  • Exercise for Wellbeing Videos (Beginners Yoga and Pilates, Chair Yoga for Beginners)
  • Self-management Support – HSE dedicated web page for people with long-term health conditions
  • Living Well
  • QUIT Smoking West (Free)
  • Alcohol
  • START Campaign – Let’s give treats a break
  • Active Play Campaign – Let’s Move and Play Everyday
  • Health and Wellbeing in Childhood and Adolescence Joint ESRI/HSE Health and Wellbeing Webinar
  • Sexual Wellbeing – New Information Guide
  • Sleep – Improving the quality of your sleep
  • Flu Vaccine 

The information was collated by Health Promotion & Improvement, HSE Health and Wellbeing Division, Community Healthcare West.

Crime Prevention Webinar
Recording Now Available
On Wednesday, November 24th Galway City Joint Policing Committee hosted a Crime Prevention Webinar. 
The recording of this informative event can be viewed at the link:

The Crime Prevention Seminar Galway covered the following topics:
- Home Security
- Cybercrime
- Domestic Abuse
- Road Safety

 Immigrant detention and alternatives: Ireland and the EU
Webinar Watch Back and Report
The European Migration Network (EMN) and Economic Social Research Institute (ESRI) webinar entitled ‘Immigrant detention and alternatives: Ireland and the EU’, which took place on Wednesday 24th November is available to watch back on the ESRI YouTube channel here.
You can watch the speaker presentations here.
In addition, the new EMN Ireland/ESRI report ‘Detention and alternatives to detention in international protection and return procedures in Ireland’ is available here.
Funding, Awards, Open Calls and Programmes

Event Registration Call Out
As the countdown to Christmas begins, the ToBeIrish Team are in the midst of planning for the To Be Irish @ Christmas 2021 programme. This initiative, which was launched by the Department of Foreign Affairs last year, will return from the 8 - 23 December 2021 and will present a festive programme geared at the Global Irish Diaspora and those who have a grá or are interested in Ireland and Irish culture around the world. 

ToBeIrish are seeking event registrations for Christmas content and programmes that they can help promote via to the Irish community worldwide; this includes those who are planning to return home this Christmas as well as those who will be remaining abroad. 

ToBeIrish are looking for both online and in-person content taking place nationwide to feature on 
The programme of events will be launched on the 1st of December this year.

NTA to Establish Transport User Advisory Group
Open Call until December 17th

The group will provide advice and recommendations to the Authority from the perspective of both transport users as well as those engaged in active travel

The National Transport Authority is now accepting applications from suitably qualified individuals for a newly established Transport Users Advisory Group (TUAG).
The Group is to be made up of regular users of public transport who interact with the various modes including train, tram, bus and taxi services as well as those engaged in active travel including cyclists and pedestrians.  
It is envisaged that those involved would bring a breadth of knowledge and experience, and provide the Authority with valuable insights that can feed into future policy development and programme implementation.
Anne Graham, CEO of the NTA said:
We believe that opening this channel of discussion with those who regularly use public transport and active travel will be key in helping us to develop and implement strategies that provide high quality accessible, sustainable transport across Ireland. It’s a unique opportunity for people across various sectors to provide us with the knowledge and awareness as to what passenger’s current and future needs may be. Their insight will be a hugely valuable resource as far as NTA is concerned.
Consultation is always a primary consideration for NTA, and currently, we have three major consultations under way: Cork BusConnects network; Connecting Ireland; and the GDA Transport Strategy. TUAG will provide us with another means of gaining a better understanding as to how we can make public transport more useful to more people.

Fifteen places are available on the Transport Users Advisory Group and membership will be drawn from the following sectoral areas:

  • Four people representing the various modes of transport nationwide,
  • A person who is part of a group who represents the interests of cyclists,
  • A person who is part of a group who represent the interests of pedestrians,
  • Three people from organisations representing the interests of persons with disabilities,
  • A person from an organisation representing the interests of older persons,
  • A person who represents the interests of business,
  • A person who represents the interests of tourism,
  • A person who represents the interests of students,
  • A person, who is a regular user of Small Public Service Vehicles (taxis, hackneys, limousines),
  • A person, who has an expertise in matters relating to Local Link

A two year term is proposed for members of this group. Candidates will be chosen following a selection process conducted by the NTA.

The deadline for receipt of applications is Friday 17th December with a first meeting of this group planned for early 2022.
For more information on the recruitment process, visit:

Artist in the Community Scheme Mentoring Award 2022
 Cut off date: 17th January 2022

Create invites expressions of interest from collaborative socially engaged artists, or artists interested in/transitioning into collaborative socially engaged arts, who wish to avail of a focused period of mentorship to develop and consolidate their practice.

This opportunity is for collaborative socially engaged artists at any career stage who are seeking support from a critical friend/guide as they develop their projects. This opportunity is also for artists interested in or transitioning into collaborative, socially engaged artistic practice. For the five selected artists, the award offers a three-month period of capacity building and arts practice development through dialogue with an experienced collaborative socially engaged artist mentor. The closing date for Expressions of Interest is Monday the 17th January 2022.

Find the open call with full details at the link:

The Pilot Artist Mentor Panel is funded through the Artist in the Community Scheme (AIC), managed by Create on a devolved basis for the Arts Council. The AIC Scheme is a primary vehicle for collaborative socially engaged arts practice in Ireland.

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Welcome to Work Programme
For Unemployed Legally Resident Migrants

Seetec Ireland have just launched a new non-for-profit Welcome to Work programme on behalf of the Government. The programme is designed to help :

  • Who: Unemployed legally resident Migrants who are entitled to work in Ireland.
  • What: Aimed at supporting legally resident migrants who are having difficulty securing employment, this 8-week programme will support the development of their employability skills.

Sessions include: • English language training; • Workplace etiquette; • CV and interview prep; • Computer skills training; • Confidence building sessions; • Self-employment support; • Careers and labour market information sessions; • One to one advice on qualification recognition and retraining; and • Employer led information sessions.
If you feel you may know individuals that qualify for the above and are interested, please see the flyer here with a link to a referral form. Please also see the Facebook page link Welcome to Work | Facebook.

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Community Climate Action Programme: Climate Education, Capacity Building and Learning by Doing (Strand 2)

 Cut off date: 14th January 2022

Strand 2: Climate Education, Capacity Building and Learning by Doing, of the Community Climate Action Programme is now open to not for profit organisations, non-government organisations, universities, third level institutions, community and voluntary organisations, social enterprises and libraries.

Partnerships/Consortiums are welcome to apply

Organisations interested in applying must complete and submit their on-line application form before the deadline of 3pm (15:00hrs) on the 14th  January, 2022.

Read all details here: Community Climate Action Programme: Climate Education, Capacity Building and Learning by Doing (Strand 2) - Pobal
Have Your Say

Survey for Community Groups on Intangible Cultural Heritage in Ireland
Deadline: 3rd December
The Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media (DTCAGSM) are surveying community groups on Intangible Cultural Heritage in Ireland in order to inform future policy in this area.
Intangible Cultural Heritage covers cultural practices and skills such as:
  • Oral traditions and expressions;
  • Performing arts;
  • Social practices, rituals and festive events;
  • Knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe; and
  • Traditional craftsmanship.
The survey along with further background information can be found below:
  1. The survey is also available via the National Inventory of ICH website at:
COVID-19 Related Updates

 Cross-Government Campaign 

The Government has updated the public health advice posters. Layer Up is a cross-Government campaign that encourages us to layer up on the behaviours to protect from Covid-19 by getting vaccinated, wearing face masks, washing/sanitising our hands frequently, keeping our distance, meeting up outdoors where possible, and ensuring indoor spaces are well ventilated. A series of posters are available free to download at

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Updates to Ireland’s COVID-19 Vaccination Programme
30 November 2021

The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly TD, has accepted new recommendations in relation to the COVID-19 booster vaccination programme. The new recommendations were made by the National Immunisation Advisory Committee (NIAC) to the Chief Medical Officer (CMO), who has endorsed these recommendations.

The NIAC have recommended a booster dose of an mRNA vaccine in order of priority for:

  • pregnant women aged 16 years and older
  • those aged 40 - 49 years
  • those aged 16 - 39 years, in descending order by age e.g., by 10-year age cohorts.

In the case of those 16–39-year-olds who received COVID-19 vaccine Janssen as their primary vaccine, they can be offered a booster dose irrespective of their age after a minimum three-month interval.
Read more here.

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The Galway City Community Call Helpline
New Flyer Graphics
The helpline is open to anyone who needs it, seven days a week.
If you need support or help to get access to shopping, food, medication or if you feel isolated or lonely and need someone to talk to, please get in touch at:
☎️ 1800 400 150

Keep Well Campaign
The Keep Well campaign provides guidelines, information, and tips on how we can add healthy and helpful habits to our daily and weekly routines around five simple actions: keeping active, keeping in contact, switching off and getting creative, eating well and minding your mood
Galway City Community Response Map

As part of the ongoing work of the Galway City Community Response Forum, Galway City Community Network and Galway City Council have developed a map of the COVID-19 related responses, activities and services available to people in Galway City.

The map is publicly available and can be used as a useful information resource both for individuals made vulnerable by COVID-19 and by organisations or agencies that need to know where they may refer their clients to for support.

The map is online at the following links:
Further details are available on the GCCN Website.

Support for Older People
We would like to share once again some of the main helplines for older people to access, especially during the ongoing COVID-19 alert.
  • Galway City COVID-19 Community Call Helpline: 1800 400 150
  • COPE Galway Helpline: 085  87 67 785
  • Alone Helpline: 0818 222 024
  • Senior Line: 1800 804 591
We highly encourage you to share these numbers with any older person you know.

We want to hear from you!
Submit your event or send us feedback at the links below.

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