I like to consider myself as taking an active part, in fact hopefully a pro-active part, in the various communities and groups which I am privileged to be part of. Given my Defence Forces career, I must be strictly apolitical in all my activism. It is hugely important that the public have confidence that all personnel serving with Óglaigh na hÉireann will never allow their politics to interfere in their duties.
I’ve outlined some of the groups which I am involved in below.
I am a member of the Permanent Defence Force Other Ranks Representative Association (PDFORRA) since 1998, and I am an elected representative since 2005. PDFORRA is the representative body for enlisted personnel serving in the Defence Forces of Ireland.
The purpose of PDFORRA is to represent and pursue the interests of enlisted personnel serving full-time in the Irish Army, Naval Service and Air Corps. The remit of the organisation includes issues regarding the pay and conditions of serving enlisted ranks in the Republic of Ireland. All serving enlisted members of the Permanent Defence Forces (PDF) are entitled to become members of the association.
I am a member of the Army, Naval Service, Air Corps (ANSAC) credit union since 1998, and I am a Barracks Representative for ANSAC since 2017.
ANSAC Credit Union was formed by PDFORRA to promote thrift, by encouraging members to save together and when necessary, to provide money for worthwhile purposes to our members. Today ANSAC, has over 6,200 members.
The common bond of ANSAC is membership of PDFORRA, and it is open to PDFORRA family members as well.
We provide assistance to our members to help organise their family budgets. Our lending service, in addition to any other service we may provide, is at the disposal of all our members.
“We, in ANSAC Credit Union Limited, believe it is our duty to provide for our members, in the most efficient way possible, the services they need to improve their social and economic well-being. In addition, to practice the values of equality, equity and mutual self-help by providing a source of credit for each other and a means of practising thrift.”
I am the Public Relations Officer for Cobh Readers and Writers.
Cobh Readers and Writers began life in 2014.
A group of like-minded people came together and decided that there was an empty space on the local creative calendar and that it ought to be filled with a festival that would celebrate the wonderful writers, artists, performers, and musicians that Cobh and indeed Ireland has.
They began to make a plan and like all great ideas this one took off like a rocket! And….it had to expand a little as well to encompass all the wonderful creative arts we are so famous for here in Ireland and we are so lucky to have so many talented people across a multitude of disciplines here in Cobh.
The name of the Group has stuck and the event may change its dates from year to year, it may even be called something else in the future; but it’s the spirit that is important to these passionate people, who look forward to delivering a festival and events programme each year, worthy of the beautiful town they call home, and the vibrant community they reside in.
So Cobh Readers and Writers hope that you come and join us in April to celebrate all the creative arts on our Great Island.
I am a member of the Irish Writers Union.
The Irish Writers Union is the main advocacy body for Irish writers and it is open to Irish writers and writers of Irish interest publications, wherever they are based. They offer members publishing advice, contract advice and promotion via our website and social member channels. The union was founded in 1986 by authors wishing to organise as writers to resist censorship in Ireland and in general to provide a voice for the collective expression of writers on matters pertaining to their profession.
The union is managed by a steering committee which is elected annually at the AGM.
The union is constantly working to achieve more favourable remuneration and conditions for writers. Over the years, we have taken on various challenges and one of our most successful projects has been the Campaign for Public Lending Rights. We have many current concerns, such as our participation in an international campaign for fairer contracts.
Among other literary competitions for whom the Irish Writers Union provides judges and submits entries, the IWU is a nominating body for the Nobel Prize in literature.
The objectives of the Irish Writers Union are:
• To organise writers to express their shared concerns and to have a collective input into decisions that affect them
• To advance the cause of writing as a profession and as a form of work
• To achieve better remuneration and more favourable conditions for writers
• To offer advice, assistance and support to individual writers in their relations with publishers and other users of their work
• To provide a means for the expression of the collective opinion of writers of matters affecting their profession