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Fourth national title for McCormack

KILFENORA lightweight boxer Kayleigh McCormack captured her fourth national title at the National Intermediate Boxing Championships in Dublin on Friday night last. The much-heralded final, which was beamed live on TG4, lived up to its expectations, with both fighters serving up a thriller. This one provided due recompense for the Kilfenora club and trainer, Pat McCormack, as it was in the same ring in October that the North Clare boxer lost out by the narrowest of margins in the finals of the U-22 championships. That controversial final might well have disillusioned anybody else but McCormack comes from a resilient family and set her mind immediately on the intermediates. She was ultimately vindicated with a comprehensive points victory over Louise O’Donoghue from the Geesala club in Mayo. Appearing live on TV for the first time seemed a little daunting for the Clare girl and her earlier right-handers were tentative but were enough to take the round and set the trend of …

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’Bridge fundraiser for Jordan’s nursing hours

A SIXMILEBRIDGE mother has launched a fundraising campaign to purchase additional nursing hours for her son, who has a life-limiting, very rare illness. A new group, Nurses for Jordan, has organised a fundraising event in the Mill Bar, Sixmilebridge on Friday, December 13 in aid of local boy Jordan Perez (5), who suffers from Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) Type Two. This will be just the start of a series of fundraising functions, which are required to purchase more nursing hours to meet his complex medical needs. SMA Type Two is part of a group of disorders that affect the control of muscle movements. It is caused by a loss of specialised nerve cells in the spinal cord and brainstem. Confined to a wheelchair, Jordan requires full-time care on a 24-hour basis. He was recently honoured as one of Ireland’s nine bravest children at Share a Dream’s National Children of Courage Awards at their Dream Ball in Clontarf Castle, Dublin. The …

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Brenda goes full circle

Canadian woman Brenda Cavillin has been busy mapping her Clare heritage, writes Carol Byrne TG4 recently featured a Canadian woman with Clare roots as part of its Tar Abhaile (Come Home) series, which focuses on the Ireland Reaching Out initiative. Brenda Cavillin (nee Killeen) came to County Clare this past week to watch the programme with the family members she has managed to connect with through the series and with the help of Tulla’s Reaching Out volunteers. Brenda is a direct descendant of James Killeen and his brother, Rev Charles Killeen, her third great-grandfather and her third great-granduncle, whose roots are in West Clare. Through her research and some happy coincidences, Brenda learned that their father, Thomas Killeen, enlisted with the British Army in 1808. After giving seven years service fighting in the Canadian War of 1812, he became eligible for a land grant in the Perth District in Canada. However, he instead opted to come home to his wife …

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When Maureen defied the marriage ban

WELL known Ennis-based writer, Maureen Cronin, wanted to be only one thing as a child – a teacher. So, it was no surprise to her family when she went on to secure a scholarship, allowing her to attend Our Lady of Mercy College, Carysfort, Blackrock to qualify as a national school teacher. However, after teaching in many schools after her graduation, falling in love could have meant the end of her time in the classroom. The introduction of the marriage ban in 1933 meant any female teacher who married after the rule came into force, had to give up their permanent job. That wasn’t to be for Maureen, who defied convention by carrying on working for 12 months without pay, then continuing her career until well after the ban was eventually lifted in 1958. For many she was a pioneer, but the mother-of-four modestly says she was only able to take this dramatic step because she had the means to …

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A million-mile gulf between Inverin and Uganda

Ronan Scully, Spancilhill, writes about his recent visit to Uganda with teachers and pupils from Coláiste Lurgan in Inverin, Galway IT takes two days to travel from a school tuck-shop in Inverin, County Galway to the poor homes of Kayunga in Uganda but, in a very real sense, the journey is one of a million miles. After two days of travel, your eyes are heavy and your legs are stiff but, in Kayunga, your mind is racing. Your first thought is to wonder how people could live in such poverty; your second is to wonder how you can help them out of it. I had travelled to the rural district in East Africa to see the work of Irish development organisation Self Help Africa, in the company of a very special group. For the last 12 years, the pupils of Coláiste Lurgan in Inverin have been raising money, through the school tuck-shop, to support projects that work with some of …

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Protecting kids on the internet

THE potential danger for children using the Internet is highlighted yet again in the result s of a recently published survey. ESET Ireland, an online scanning provider, has revealed that up to 73% of Irish children are left unsupervised online. So what can be doneto protect kids against online predators and solicitation? In 82% of online sex crimes against minors, the offender used the victim’s social networking site to gain information about the victim’s likes and dislikes. Sixty-five per cent of online sex offenders used the victim’s social networking site to gain home and school information about the victim Predators may seek out children who are participating in attention-seeking behaviours as a way of finding connections with others. Sadly, these kids seeking connection are generally the ones least apt to have a concerned adult that they will feel to whom they feel they can turn, to report solicitation. These targeted kids may also not wish to report the behaviour, as …

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