Céad Míle Fáilte Clare!
Welcome to Clare, our new Operations Assistant.
Dia daoibh! I’m Clare Cunningham and I am delighted to say that I am the new Operations Assistant at Michaela Foundation. I am from Kilkeel in Co.Down and I have graduated from Ulster University with a degree in Irish language and literature. I have always had a great passion for the Irish language and culture ever since I was in Moneydarragh Primary School in Longstone. I have also played camogie at university and served as secretary for the team. I was the Public Relations Officer for An Cumann Gaelach at university and this allowed me to promote the language amongst the students. This passion has followed me throughout my life and I now teach a beginners’ Irish class in my local community to encourage people to use their cúpla focal!
I heard about Michaela Foundation when I was studying in St.Malachy’s High School in Castlewellan. My Irish teacher, Mr. Hynes, encouraged a few of us into volunteering at camp and after that I definitely caught the volunteering bug! Over the past few years, I have volunteered in the Newry summer camp as a Fáilte leader and in Castlewellan as Fáilte coordinator. It was at these summer camps that I really connected with the Life Without Limits ethos of the foundation. I knew as soon as I saw the advert for a job opening, I had to apply! I have big shoes to fill and I know I will thoroughly enjoy this amazing opportunity and I feel honoured to work for this foundation celebrating the life of Michaela McAreavey.
I hope my experience will help promote Gaeilge amongst Michaela Foundation supporters. I’d like to encourage our MF family to cherish their culture, to know its importance and to preserve it. I want to promote Michaela Foundation nationally and ensure that people know the ethos and the values of the Foundation. I will work on the continual growth of Michaela Foundation, especially promoting our summer camps. We currently have 20 camps in Ireland and I hope the number will continue to rise. The camps encourage young girls to be themselves in a world that is ever changing, at the ages of 11-13 they are most vulnerable to social pressure. At the camps, they are taught that they don’t have to look a certain way, they each have their own talents and that the most important thing is to be yourself. Life is a gift from God and they should live it to the full. Mol an óige agus tiocfaidh sí!