23rd May 2022
Local Volunteers celebrated at the Covid 19 Volunteer Recognition Event in Monaghan
An evening which recognised and celebrated the efforts of local volunteers in Monaghan during Covid 19 took place on Thursday 19th May in the Four Seasons Hotel. The event was organised by Monaghan County Council and was held in partnership with the Monaghan Volunteer Centre. The event coincided with National Volunteer Week. A number of similar events took place around the country including an event in Dublin Castle.
Nominations for the event were received through the Volunteer Ireland web portal which accepted nominations online. The public were invited to nominate volunteers from their communities who made a positive contribution during the pandemic. A total of one hundred and thirteen volunteers were nominated in County Monaghan.
The event was well attended with up to one hundred volunteers and representatives of the groups involved in the Community Response Forum which provided vital services during the Covid 19 pandemic to the most vulnerable and marginalised in our communities. The volunteers were recognised for the services which they provided which included, for example, collecting shopping for neighbours in isolation, bringing people to medical appointments and checking in on vulnerable neighbours.
The event also recognised the contribution of Volunteer Ireland, who enabled so many volunteers to get involved and which brought communities together, particularly through the Community Call initiative which resulted in an unprecedented mobilisation of state and voluntary resources during the pandemic.
There were a number of speakers on the night which included the Leas Cathaoirleach of Monaghan County Council, Cllr. Hugh McElvaney. Cllr McElvaney acknowledged the contribution of the management and staff of Monaghan County Council who worked tirelessly during the pandemic, the valuable work of the Community Response Forum and the efforts of the volunteers. He also acknowledged the many citizens who were lost during the pandemic. He stated “I would like to acknowledge and remember those which we have lost – family members, friends, valuable members of our communities and our work colleagues. Each of them is so greatly missed”.
Minister Heather Humphreys was the final guest speaker on the night, and she thanked the volunteers on behalf of the Government and the people of Ireland for their ongoing invaluable contribution to our society. She also acknowledged that National Volunteer Week was the perfect time to celebrate and acknowledge the achievements of the volunteers during the pandemic. Finally, she accepted that there is a belief that volunteers don’t do what they do for recognition but the event was an appropriate platform for acknowledging their work and she thanked each and every one of them.
Minister Humphreys also presented commemorative badges and letters of appreciation on behalf of the Taoiseach Micheál Martin. The badges were designed as part of a nationwide school art competition ran by the Department of Rural and Community Development.
The event finished with some traditional music played by the local Tullycorbet Comhaltas Group.
Barry Eaton, Social Inclusion Development Officer, Monaghan County Council. Tel: 086 3134557