South and East Cork Development’s ‘One to One’ Employment Support Structure
Cora O Donnell, Employment support facilitator and mentor
Cora has been in place at the Cumann Na nDaoine offices in Youghal since 2004 and with SECAD in Midleton since 2006 and is the resident mentor for so many people down through the years who want to avail of ‘one to one’ employment support.
“When I started here first in SECAD things were a lot different, the economy was thriving, there were many people coming into the South and East Cork Area, from different countries and the market place was very different to what it is today. However it was evident that the long term unemployed were finding it hard to avail of these opportunities. SECAD’s main objective has always been to help the long term unemployed to enhance their opportunities to get back into the work place, increase their skills and avail of our supports and provide information on the different benefits available to them via FÁS, VEC and the DSP. It is now more important than ever that people can use our supports in place and get the confidence and encouragement to re-focus, re-build and enhance their chances to re-enter employment, upskill and re-train”.
Figures for the past year read that 300 people had met Cora via the ‘one on one’ service, where she provided support to them on numerous occasions which is a huge number for one person to process. The many testimonials of thanks and appreciation speak volumes to the excellent, professionally run and totally free confidential support service that is in place.
“We are still averaging a 60% plus success rate of individuals returning to employment, training or self-enterprise. To actually see somebody realise their potential and be informed of the options available provides the greatest satisfaction of all. It is not easy for individuals to remain focused and positive with the constant negativity about and we hope to try to help them filter this, put a plan in place and be supported and encouraged to move forward”.
Cora is fully booked up until June, but to book a future appointment now, feel free to contact Cumann Na Doine, Youghal on 024-91900 or contact SECAD at 021-4613432.
South and East Cork Area Development ready to launch brand new Website
CEO of South and East Cork Area Development Ryan Howard said “The new website will provide easier access to the range of supports that we, South & East Cork Area Development (SECAD) can offer and a huge range of projects that we have supported plus links onto an array of other supports. It’s a really simple and user friendly way of getting to know how organisations such as SECAD across the EU are investing in our communities. Most important of all, the website provides a real sense of the value of Community Led Local Development which is becoming a cornerstone of the development of communities across Europe”. The new SECAD website will be on line officially in early June.
SECAD Supporting Rural Transport
The SECAD Rural Transport Programme began operating in 2008 to provide transport services to address unmet transport needs in the South and East Cork area. SECAD is one of 35 groups delivering the programme in Ireland. The Rural Transport Programme is funded by the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport and managed by Pobal nationally.
The Programme aims to provide community based, flexible transport services that can respond to local needs and connect people living in rural areas to their local villages and towns or onto other transport options. It is designed to support people respond to their transport needs and provide improved opportunities for individuals to access basic services, overcome social exclusion and improve their well-being and quality of life.
The services are open to everyone. Young people, older people, visitors…anyone who would like to get out and about but does not have the transport to do it. Even if someone does have transport, they may not want to use their car – they could use the bus instead. People can use the transport to access services (banking, doctor, health centre, hairdressing…) shopping, to join in social and recreational activities, to meet other people. Each passenger has a different reason for using our Rural Transport Services.
Booking on all of the services is essential. If you have not used the services before you need to register with us by completing a Passenger Registration Form. This can be got by calling the office and a form will be posted out to you. There is a specific form for each service depending on which one you might want to use. We ask passengers who intend to travel to book with us each week (24hrs in advance). Passengers can be collected at their home or at a central collection point on each service. There are particular drop off points on each service at their final destination, however we can be flexible with drop off requests.
In South Cork SECAD currently deliver the following return services:
- Ballinhassig to Ballincollig: 2nd & 4th Tuesday of every month
- Ballinhassig to Macroom: 1st Tuesday of every month
- Ballinhassig to Mahon Point: 3rd Thursday of every month
- Roberts Cove to Carrigaline: Every Friday morning
- Ringaskiddy to Carrigaline; Every Friday morning
SECAD also support a shuttle service that operates in the Little Island area each weekday and creates a link between the rail station and employers in the area.
The Rural Transport Service is widely described as lifeline for rural dwellers in the south Cork area. These are just two quotes form SECAD rural transport passengers:
“I am 83 years of age and I live alone. I live 5 miles from Ballinhassig, Innishannon and Kinsale. There is no bus or shop without going to these places so you will understand why the rural transport means so much to me. It is a lifeline. It is imperative for me and many more like me that it is continued”.
“I am very grateful and happy with the bus service, it helps me get my shopping, go to the doctors, hairdressers, get my pension. I was dependant on my family and they all have jobs. Now I can go and do all these things without hassle, meet my friends for a cup of tea. So thank you”.