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Kinvara school celebrates extension

SEAMOUNT College, Kinvara celebrated the official opening of the Pope Francis building on Friday. Minister for Training and Skills at the Department of Education and Skills Ciaran Cannon and Bishop of Galway, Kilmacduagh and Kilfenora Martin Drennan jointly opened the new facility. Representatives from the Rescue Committee were present, as were Sisters of Mercy, Fr Frank Larkin and previous members of the Board of Management, Parents Council and various representatives involved with the design and construction of the new extension and refurbished classrooms. Minister Cannon and Bishop Drennan addressed students before Principal Maighread Mhic Dhomhnaill paid tribute to all those who had worked towards keeping the school open and extending it. “From some dark days where the future of Seamount College was a bleak picture with challenges from various directions we now gather together on a bright spring day to celebrate the opening of the Pope Francis building – a new wing which on a practical level gives us a …

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Keeping your dog mentally healthy

KEEPING your dog happy and healthy is just part of being a dog owner and keeping your dog healthy also includes his mental well-being. These are just a few of the mental problems that your dog can have and ways to help your dog with his mental health. Do dogs get depressed? Of course, dogs get depressed. They go through bouts of depression for many reasons and you will notice your dog moping about and not wanting to play, drinking small amounts of water, going off their food and losing weight. You want your dog’s mental health to be good, but how can you tell what is causing this depression? After you have ruled out a physical problem by having a check with the vet, you can then check what may be causing this change in your dog’s attitude. Grief can cause depression in dogs just as it can in us. Has your dog lost a playmate recently? Maybe a …

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Maureen on Nationwide

MAUREEN Cronin, whose poetry appears regularly in The Clare Champion, will be featured on RTÉ’s Nationwide on Monday evening next, immediately after the Six One News.   The slot follows Maureen on her usual Thursday trail in Ennis, which includes collecting the parish bulletins for distribution to neighbours, delivering her poem to the ‘Champion, and on the library to talk to Coláiste Mhuire students. The programme has been packaged by RTE reporter, Teresa Mannion and cameraman, Jim Wylde from Ennis.

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The Maiden Aunt arrives in Kildysart

By Peter O’Connell KILDYSART Drama Group will present their production of Jimmy Keary’s The Maiden Aunt in the local community centre this Saturday and Sunday. This is the third time that the Kildysart players have staged a Jimmy Keary play.  They produced the world premiere of Too Close to Home in 2007 and Fortunes and Misfortunes in 2010.   Last year the group enjoyed enormous success with their production of A Wake in the West which, like this years production, was directed by Colin McMahon. “Last year was our biggest success to date. I’d say we turned away hundreds of people. We just didn’t have the room for them so we’re trying to keep up with that standard now which isn’t easy,” the play director told The Clare Champion. Some who attended last years play thought that they had wandered into a funeral home. Anybody who entered the hall by the rear door, were met with a ‘body’ which  was …

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Clare woman’s Ukraine war fear

AS international attention focuses on the crisis in Ukraine, one Clare woman has a powerful but unenviable insight into the political crisis. Lena Madden was born and reared in Ukraine but has lived in Ireland for the past 12 years. She is an Irish citizen but both her parents still live in Ukraine. Divorced and in different cities, they are on opposing sides of the political and ideological divide. “One of them is based in a Russian-speaking region and the other one is based in a Ukrainian-speaking region, so I have two stories and they are totally different. Things have polarised in both areas,” Lena told The Clare Champion. “My biggest fear is that war will break out,” she said. In late November, protestors took to the streets of Kiev after the Government decided not to sign an agreement fostering greater integration with the European Union. Instead, it announced it would begin looking to improve co-operation with Russia. On February …

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Helping to reawaken Irish America

By CAROL BYRNE CATHAL Goan, former head of RTE, will launch Irish America Reawakening: The Eoin McKiernan Story a book at Foras na Gaeilge in Dublin on Wednesday next. Eoin McKiernan was the son of Clare emigrant Delia Nagle from Lahinch, and founded the Irish American Cultural institute (IACI), which poured millions of dollars into the Irish economy over the latter part of the 20th century. His daughter, Deirdre McKiernan Hetzler has chronicled his life and achievements in a new book entitled Irish America Reawakening: The Eoin McKiernan Story, currently available in Ennis. Eoin’s mother was from Tullygarvin in Lahinch but he was born in New York City, and studied at the Irish Cumman na Gaeilge in New York and won a scholarship to study at Rosmuc. Eoin was a fluent Irish speaker and worked passionately for the language revival. He was on the faculty at the State University of New York and the president of what would become the …

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Pets can help you be healthier and happier

Our pets need to be companion animals, well socialised with people and our homes to be of benefit to us. Dogs and cats kept outside don’t offer us the same companionship and quite often they themselves suffer by not being invited to live indoors with us. Being part of the family has beneficial effects on humans and animals alike. Spending quality time with a dog, cat or other animal can have a positive impact on your mood and your health. Pet owners, on average, are better off than non-pet owners, especially when they have a higher-quality relationship with their pets. For some active people, that includes playing games, walking and exercising with your dog. For others, who can’t get outside, just petting your dog or cat can help you feel connected. Even talking to a budgie can help. Pets can help you in other ways, too. A healthier heart: Your dog may make you less likely to get heart disease …

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Sonia ‘Sunny’ Jacobs.

Former Death Row inmate coming to Ennis

By Owen Ryan SOME suffering is unavoidable in life but it takes a ferocious amount of ill luck to be faced with an ordeal as horrific as that which Sonia “Sunny” Jacobs endured. The American spent five years on death row and 17 in jail, after being in the wrong place at the wrong time, while it was worse for her partner, Jesse Tafero, who ended up in the electric chair. Sunny was eventually exonerated and, remarkably, she ended up marrying Peter Pringle, an Irishman, who had also been sentenced to death in 1980 after the killing of two gardaí. He was exonerated in 1995. Both have written books about their imprisonment and are due to write one together, while Sunny will be in Glór on Sunday, March 9 as part of the Sunday Symposium on the theme of Dealing with Adversity, alongside DJ Carey; Billy Keane, journalist and author, and Michael Murphy, cancer survivor. Sunny’s life changed forever in …

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