Activation Programme launches

Activation Programe goes gardening
The Activation Programme is a pilot, nurturing and holistic programme for adults who commit one day a week for 10 weeks. Activities are both indoors and outdoors but always person centred.

In March of this year our one day / week Activation Programme commenced on a 10 week pilot basis. This programme aims to provide meaningful activities and ongoing learning opportunities in the magical and safe environment of the Field of Dreams. It is geared at those adults who wish to partake in a variety of social and practical activities and gain new experiences in areas such as horticulture, catering and arts and crafts.

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We all have a Dream, Video

We had great fun filming this thanks to Gerard and Eugene from Dell/EMC who sponsored the production. They were so engaging and natural with us and made us feel really special. Thank you lads and thank you DELL/EMC for your confidence in our project. We think this short video gives a great insight into the value and potential of Field of Dreams; we hope you agree.

If you would like to contribute to our dream we will bring you to our EVERYDAY HERO donation page here.

Positive energy flowing from ESB to Field of Dreams

Cork, September 12 2016 – ESB Energy for Generations Fund has awarded funding of €25,000 to Down Syndrome Cork for its inspiring Field of Dreams project at a special cheque presentation in Cork city today

ESB Energy for Generations Fund

Pictured at the announcement of the funding at Down Syndrome Cork, were, Aoife O’Sullivan and Meghan O’Halloran, Down Syndrome Cork Members, with Jerry O’Sullivan, Deputy CEO ESB and Jason Bane, Field of Dreams Board Member. Pic John Sheehan

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Our Dream has a strong Cork Foundation


Down Syndrome Cork Board members have a dream, a Field of Dreams, that our adult members with Down syndrome will have increased opportunities for meaningful work. Since the idea germinated a couple of years ago we have received support for our Dream from many and varied people and agencies in Cork, Ireland and beyond. One such agency is Cork Foundation and its CEO Padraic Vallely. Cork Foundation has taken our project into the stableyard of Cork initiatives which they support and it is a partnership which we truly welcome.

The Cork Foundation is a unique social enterprise fund, fueled by donations from Cork people at home and abroad who want to support social entrepreneurs in need of funding to bring about positive social change in Cork city and county. In a time of justifiable public scepticism of charitable organisations, we feel that working together helps to rebuild and maintain the public confidence that the majority of Cork charities deserve.

Cork Foundation

Recently we were invited by Padraic to address the Cork Association of New York. This is an active and interested group of first and second generation Cork people living in New York who visit Cork biennially,  They make a positive contribution in a variety of ways to the place they call home.

We were delighted and wanted to send a little part of our dream back to New York. We organised a ceramic workshop where volunteers with and without Down syndrome came to make plant markers. In the clay we stamped leaves picked from the hedgerows of our Field and the words “Irish dreams grow here”. We really enjoyed making them and love how they turned out.  Each one is unique, some use ‘creative’ spelling of the words and each one is beautiful. Most of all we love the thought that just as seeds disperse on a gentle breeze, these plant pot stakes are dispersing into the wider Cork diaspora and bring a little piece of our hope and confidence with them.

We were delighted with the opportunity to meet a delegate from the Cork NY Association and are very grateful for the fundraising donation resulting from the raffle at the Cork / NY Ball. 

Thank you New York and most of all thank you Cork Foundation. May our partnership grow in mutual benefit

.Cork FoundationCork Foundation

Planning Permission granted, Field of Dreams

Planning Permission granted

We received news yesterday that Field of Dream’s application for planning permission to Cork County Council has been successful. If dreams like ours were fueled by excitement then we’d be up and open for business on the excitement of the last 24 hours alone.

Our dream will become a reality because the momentum is building. For the past couple of weeks we have approached a number of Cork businesses about the possibility of building sustainable and mutually beneficial partnerships into the future. The response has been very positive – if we haven’t chatted yet please get in touch. The excitement is infectious. You’ll find more information on the nuts and bolts of our project here.

planning permission granted

Visiting the Field this morning were Tony McGrath ( not in photo ), Jason Bane and Ray O’Callaghan, all Field of Dreams Board members, who walked the site with Eoin English, Irish Examiner senior journalist. The sun shone and it was easy to envisage that our dreams and those of countless adults with Down syndrome who will work and learn in this field will be realised.

Read more on the Field by Eoin English in tomorrow’s Irish Examiner or watch the taster video on Diarmuid Gavin’s recent visit here.

More information: Who What Where

More information - Briefing Document

More information / Briefing Document

Who? Down Syndrome Cork is a strong group of committed parents with a vision for their children to live full, active, enjoyable and purposeful lives. As a respected Cork charity with a proven track record we are delighted to be bringing the Field of Dreams to fruition in the coming months. We have over 360 members across Cork of whom 170 have adult family members with Down syndrome. Diarmuid Gavin, celebrity garden designer is committed to supporting us in the design process and ongoing into the future.

What & Where? Field of Dreams is to be a ‘demonstrator’ project, the first of its kind in Ireland. The project will see a 3 acre site at Curraheen, Bishopstown transform into something we think is magical – an educational and work based horticultural site for adults with Down syndrome. The focus of this programme will be on social and therapeutic horticulture, offering proven benefits to physical and psychological health, communication and problem solving. Activities that support lifelong learning and independence such as numeracy / literacy, computer skills and cooking will be offered in a setting that is holistic, sociable and FUN.
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