Leader Forum Update Autumn 2012

If YOU are interested in sports,

political activism and lobbying,

the arts, pampering days, awareness raising

or just tea, cake, a chat

and meeting new people,

contact Naoise at naoisecunningham@dublincil.org to put you in touch with your closest Leader Forum.





It’s been a busy time for the Leader Forum groups around the country this summer. As well as meeting locally, Leader Forum groups have now started to meet regionally to share ideas, experiences and achievements across counties. Members of Leader Fora across the country were invited to meet one another at the Film Fleadh and the Galway Fringe Festival.

This summer has been a great example of that as Leaders got together at the Galway Film Fleadh to celebrate the participation of Galway Leader Forum members featured in two films. Marian Maloney Nolan featured in a film, Love at First Sight. Losing your sight is possibly one of the most difficult things someone could have to deal with in life. For Marian Nolan, it has not stopped her from living a full happy life… with a little help from a new friend. This short film documents a taste of Marian’s life and her guide dog Yaz. Marian highlights that she is many things, a woman, a mother, a sister, a friend, a dancer, a business woman, a trainer, an animal lover and her disability is just a part of her identity.

Ciara D’Eath and Eileen Gormley featured in a film ‘Welcome to Our World’. They say In this country we value history more than we value human rights.’, ‘It’s the able-bodied people that have the disability.’‘I would love to be able to clamp every person never mind their cars, just so they can think for a minute.’The historic city of Galway is reputed to be a fun-loving city for visitors and residents alike. But there is a darker side, encountered daily by wheelchair users. Fast-moving and funny with moments of anger, frustration, pain and courage, welcome to the world of the wheelchair user.

Not to be outdone, Rhona Coughlan of the Cork Peer Group showcased a stunning integrated dance performance with her colleagues in a group called Spoken Dance. Audience members were silenced an amazed by the movements and stories told by the group. Inspired by the performance, it is planned that some of the Leader Forum Groups will come together to try out this form of dance themselves in the next year.

See their piece,

Don’t Go


In keeping with a summer of the Arts, the Sligo Leader Forum hosted a wonderful Sligo Leader Forum meeting in the Model Sligo. Leaders participated in a guided tour of the Yeats exhibition with fantastic audio description of paintings provided by…..It wouldn’t be a trip to Sligo without a taste of something from the Yeats family. Leader Forum members enjoyed a lovely lunch afterwards in the Model where they planned their next set of events. The Sligo Leader Forum are fearless and it looks like next steps may be some Extreme Paint Balling. 



Map of Leader Forum Groups:


International Day of People with Disabilities

If you're looking for a way to celebrate International Day of People with Disabilities on Dec 3rd

you may be interested in supporting the Galway Leader Forum and getting to their Fashion Show.

Mulled wine and good times are promised! Keep a date for your Diary! Monday 3rd December, the Menlo Park Hotel Galway at 7:30pm starting with Mulled Wine and Finger food! It is to celebrate International Disability Day.

Clothes will be modelled by people with disabilities and will be audio-described for those with visual impairments.

We want to turn our disabilities around into an ability as we are humans too! Hope to see you all there!


Children's Laughter
I hear the distant sound of laughter
It sounds so infectious and sweet
The sound of children so innocent
Running and jumping in the street
I wonder what their laughing at
Then again, on second thoughts
Maybe I don't want to know
But my attention it has caught
It doesn't matter why they laugh
At least they're having fun
It's so important to smile and laugh
For each and everyone
So here's a little advice for you
Stand up and join the kids
Laughing will make you all feel good
And you'll be glad you did
Eileen Gormley