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CITY TRIBUNE

Galway 2020 tight-lipped on payment for ‘legacy’ event

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Galway 2020 has declined to say how much money it paid to a private company to deliver a ‘legacy’ conference in the city last month.

The ‘Creating the Legacy’ conference was a three-day event held in June in Galway Mayo Institute of Technology’s Cluain Mhuire campus in Wellpark. Some 80-people were handpicked to attend the event, which was by invitation only.

It was organised by Future Search, an organisation that has links with Aideen McGinley, chairperson of the Board of Galway 2020.

Spokesperson for Galway 2020, Fintan Maher, said: “Aideen has been a sponsor, participant, facilitator and volunteer member of the (Future Search) network for which she receives no remuneration. There is no conflict of interest.

“With regard to the fee for delivering the conference this is a commercial matter between Future Search and Galway 2020.”

The personal invitations for the “unique” conference told invitees that “this will be like no other conference you have ever attended”.

“First, participants will be a cross-section of those with a genuine stake in the future of Galway City and County. Second, the conference is entirely interactive, no speakers, no papers. You will have a chance for purposeful dialogue, exploring every facet of what we have and our shared aspirations for a legacy of culture and creativity.

“Third, you will have a chance to formulate next-step action proposals in light of the big picture developed by all.”

The invite said “this is ‘not just another meeting’. The stakes are high”.

It concluded with a plea: “We have worked very hard to make sure that we have the right people attending the conference ensuring they have the right level of authority and responsibility and that we have the right diversity in terms of geography, ethnicity, gender, experience etc. This invitation is personal to you and I do hope you can seize this once-in-a-generation opportunity to help create a lasting cultural legacy for Galway”.

Meanwhile, Galway 2020 has also refused to divulge how much money it has paid to Connected Talent, Derry-based recruitment specialists that set up a Galway office in the Cornstore – beside the Galway 2020 offices – in 2016.

The company was described as a “talent partner” of Galway 2020 and its services were used to recruit staff to Galway 2020, including a Business Engagement Director. An applicant was offered the position but the offer was subsequently withdrawn.

A Galway 2020 spokesperson said: “With regard to recruitment fees paid to Connected Talent this is a commercial matter between Connected Talent and Galway 2020.”

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CITY TRIBUNE

Matriarch of Scotty’s Diner donates kidney to her son!

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A well-known family in the Galway restaurant trade have swapped chef whites for hospital gowns after the matriarch donated a kidney to her son.

Jenny and Andrew Ishmael, synonymous with Scotty’s Diner in Cúirt na Coiribe on the Headford Road in Terryland, are recovering in Beaumont Hospital after the marathon live donor operation.

It took place last Monday and staff are so impressed by the quick recovery of mother and son that they could be discharged as early as this weekend.

“It went really well. I’m still a bit sore. We’re still on the mend. It’s working perfectly,” says Andrew from the isolation ward of the hospital’s Kidney Centre.  “My creatine was over 1,000 when I came in and it’s already around 260.

“I felt weak after the surgery, but I could feel that bit of life in me again straight away. It’s amazing how quick it works. Mom wasn’t too great after the surgery – it was her first ever. She was quite sore, a bit iffy, but she’s good now.

“We have rooms back-to-back. We’ve been going for walks, going for breakfast together. It’s nice to spend that time together.”

Andrew – or Drew as he’s known to family and friends –  was diagnosed with kidney disease when he was just 16.

Berger’s Disease occurs when an antibody called immunoglobulin builds up in the kidneys and results in inflammation, which over time, can hamper the kidneys’ ability to filter waste from the blood.

He managed the condition well for over a decade without too much impact on his life.

The son of classically trained chefs who studied together at Johnson and Wales College in Rhode Island, he grew up working in his parents’ American-style diner, trading since 1991.
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see the February 3 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

New River Corrib rescue boat to be deployed following ‘significant donation’

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The provision of a specialist rescue craft on the Corrib – upstream from the Weir – could now happen over the coming weeks or months following a ‘significant voluntary donation’ in the past few weeks, the Galway City Tribune has learned.

Water safety issues on the Corrib were highlighted last month when up to 10 rowers had to be rescued after their two boats were sucked in by the currents towards the Weir.

The Marine Casualty Investigation Board has launched an investigation into the circumstances of the potentially catastrophic incident which occurred around midday on Saturday, January 14.

A specialist D Class lifeboat is now being sourced as part of a multi-agency approach to try and improve emergency rescue operations upstream from the Weir which would be accessible on a 24/7 basis.

While the cost would be in the region of €40,000 to €50,000, the overall figure would rise to around €80,000 to €90,000 when specialist personnel training costs were included.

Galway Lifeboat Operations Manager, Mike Swan, told the Galway City Tribune that he was aware of a lot of work going on behind the scenes to try and get the Corrib rescue craft in place as soon as possible.

“I suppose we’re all trying to work together to ensure that a full-time rescue craft is provided on the Corrib and I believe that real progress is being made in this regard. This would be very good news for everyone,” said Mr Swan.
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see the February 3 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Three years on and ‘Changing Places’ facility on Salthill Promenade still not open

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Mayor of Galway, Cllr Clodagh Higgins at the site of the Changing Places facility, for which she had ring-fenced money. Work on the project only began last February, despite initial predictions that the facility would be open in January last year.

From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The wait for accessible, specialised toilet facilities at Ladies Beach in Salthill goes on – three years after they were ‘prioritised’ by city councillors.

Galway City Council has confirmed to the Tribune this week that the ‘Changing Places’ facility at Ladies Beach is still not open.

Construction of the facility began almost a year ago, at the end of February 2022.

The local authority confirmed that some €135,600 has been spent on the unit, which is not yet open to the public.

“The initial stages of construction went well, with the facility now largely in place. There are a number of outstanding snags to be completed before the facility can open.

“Galway City Council is liaising with the contractor to complete out these snags, with a view to opening the facility as soon as possible,” a spokesperson said.

The local authority did not elaborate on what ‘snags’ were delaying the project.

But in January, Chief Executive of Galway City Council, Brendan McGrath, suggested that staffing issues were to blame for the delay.

(Photo: Mayor of Galway, Clodagh Higgins, at the site of the Changing Places facility, for which she had ring-fenced money).
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see the February 3 edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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