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The Jabbathon vaccine promotion starts on Monday 13 September, with the first in an extensive series of vaccination clinics for students.

The initiative will involve around 60 walk-in clinics in September covering some 30 campuses – offering first doses to students across Northern Ireland’s universities and Further Education colleges. The clinics are being run by Health Trust vaccinator teams.

The two Newry locations are both 14 September :Newry Campus, West Exams Hall, 14th September 10am to 3pm and Greenbank Campus Marquee, 14th September 11am to 3pm

72% of young people in the 18-29 age group in NI have now had at least one Covid-19 vaccine dose.

The campus vaccination push is part of the ongoing part of the ongoing vaccination push, as the overall take-up rate for first doses comes close to 90% of the adult population.

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Members of the Albert Basin Park Stakeholders Forum have sent an open letter to Councillors on the Council's SP&R Committee, the Committee responsible for moving the Albert Basin project forward.

The letter requests that the Committee reject the suggested eight year timeframe as well as ensuring that the 'World Class' park includes a Marina and an iconic opening bridge  

It's signed by 16 members of the Stakeholders Forum including Newry.ie 

Dear Councillors,
As key stakeholders in the Albert Basin Park project, we would like to highlight a number of concerns regarding the recent presentation by TetraTech to the Stakeholder Forum.
 
Given the huge public support for this project, its importance for the health and wellbeing of Newry people, and the fact that the council originally committed to delivering the park by May 2023, we find it unacceptable that the proposed plan will not be completed until 2029 at the earliest. It is hard to understand why, almost four years after the council was instructed to build a new city park on the Albert Basin, there is still no timeline for delivery of this project.
 
In order to address our concerns, and those of the wider community, we are asking you to reject the draft eight year Programme and instruct the council to come back with a plan for delivery in this term as was originally promised. 
 
This plan should include a pop-up park and a play park in Phase One. We note that independent consultants have recommended a concurrent "Design and Build" procurement route as the fastest and most cost-effective way to deliver this project.
 
Finally, the vision of a "world class park" that was demanded by the community and promised by political parties must also be respected. The proposed design does not currently meet that standard as it is missing a number of key features identified by the community consultation, including a marina and an iconic lifting bridge over the canal. These elements should be reinstated in order to ensure that the high quality project that was originally promised is ultimately delivered.
 
Regards,
 
Brian Cleland, Newry 2020
Colum Sands, Rostrevor Action Respecting the Environment
Columba O'Hare, Newry.ie
Davy Hyland, Former Newry Councillor
Debbie Brennan, Young People's Representative
Fiona McAlinden, Our Lady's Grammar School
Francis Gallagher, Daisy Hill Action Group
Gerry Brennan, Silvery Light Sailing
Grainne Powell Sticky Fingers Arts
Helena Young, Newry Maritime Association
James McAreavey, Newry Maritime Association
James McConville, Albert Basin Park Project
Maurice McConville, Newry Urban Sports
Oliver McGauley, Newry Coarse Fish Angling Club
Raymond Jackson, Confederation of Community Groups
Shirley Forshaw, Newry GP
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Thanks to generous support from Newry, Mourne & Down (NM&D) PCSP, Road Safe NI and the PCSP are able to provide every year 5 child in the Newry, Mourne & Down council district with a copy of our new key stage 2 road safety resource “Street Smart Road Safe” booklet. This booklet which can be described as a Highway Code for kids is full of advice for when they are walking, cycling or travelling as passengers.  

Road Safe NI initially developed the book early in 2021 thanks to a grant from the DFI ‘Safer Travel Grant Scheme’.  The PCSP recently partnered with the local Road Safe NI, Newry, Mourne & Down Committee and have funded the reprint of the book to ensure all primary 5 children in the district receive a copy of this valuable resource over the next few weeks.

Davy Jackson Chairperson of Road Safe NI said “We are very grateful for the support from the local PCSP in this valuable programme”. Tricia O'Neill, Secretary, added that 'children are one of the most vulnerable road users but with education, risks can be reduced and lives saved".

The books will be delivered to primary schools across the district over the next few weeks. Thank you to the Newry, Mourne & Down PCSP for their continued support of our local road safety education and support programmes in the Newry, Mourne and Down District.

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Local Groups in Newry, Mourne and Down will celebrate the peace building and cultural diversity efforts of young people and the challenges they face with a creative programme of cross-community and multicultural events as part of Good Relations Week 2021.

Good Relations Week 2021, co-ordinated by the Community Relations Council, will run from Monday 20th to Sunday 26th September, with a mix of arts, history, music, sport and culture-based events from a diverse range of organisations across the region.

This year’s colourful programme will include the return of face-to-face events, alongside an expanded online offering of virtual events and digital content. This will include workshops, lectures, panel discussions, feature talks, podcasts, film, music and dance performances, storytelling and exhibitions.

The theme for Good Relations Week 2021 is ‘Brighter Days Ahead’ which celebrates the efforts of young people in their everyday lives to break down barriers, unite communities and act as a catalyst for peace building and cultural diversity in our society.

It will explore how society can better meet the needs of young people and explore the issues affecting their culturally diverselives today, including sectarianism and racism, dealing with the continuing impact of the past, mental health, isolation, education, faith, the pandemic, and the environment.

Cllr Cathy Mason, Chairperson of Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, says “Newry, Mourne and Down District would like to celebrate the culture of each of our residents. Good Relations Week is a reminder that to share this place we live in, we need to respect each other’s differences and increase understanding and engagement between and amongst all sections of the community.

“I hope that community relations week will highlight the exceptional ethos of partnership working and community integration which Newry, Mourne and Down District is proud to showcase. I would like to pay tribute to all community and voluntary groups who give so freely of their time throughout the year to help improve local community relations in the District.”

Martin McDonald MBE, Chair of the Community Relations Council, says: “Good Relations Week 2021 will showcase over 200 highly entertaining events that will shine a light on ground-breaking projects and initiatives that tackle sectarianism and racism and promote cultural diversity – all aimed at building brighter days ahead for everyone. 

“We are delighted that over 100 different event and content organisers have embraced our ‘Brighter Days Ahead’ theme and helped to shape a truly remarkable Good Relations Week 2021 that demonstrates imagination, enthusiasm, and commitment to building a united community in our everyday lives.”

Jacqueline Irwin, Chief Executive of the Community Relations Council adds: Huge thanks to everyone who has contributed to this year’s dynamic programme of events, helping to make Good Relations Week a modern celebration of our diverse culture and heritage.

“We are once again thrilled to be able to deliver this showcase of cross community and multi-cultural arts, history, music and culture.  We have a packed programme of face-to-face and virtual events, as well as online material."

Plan your week of events by checking out the programme from Newry, Mourne and Down at WWW.GOODRELATIONSWEEK.COM

Good Relations Week is co-ordinated by the Community Relations Council and supported by The Executive Office.  It contributes to delivering the Together: Building a United Community Strategy. The Community Relations Council co-ordinates the week with the support of a Steering Committee comprising of The Executive Office, Department for Communities, Department of Justice, Education Authority, Libraries NI, Cathedral Quarter Trust and The Nerve Centre.

Keep up to date on Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #GRW2021.

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The Southern Trust is the first in Northern Ireland to install this innovative development in mammography technology which provides a more comfortable experience for patients and offers greater sensitivity and 3D image quality to improve the detection of cancer.

Studies show that the new 3Dimensions™ system detectsup to 65% more invasive breast cancers, compared to 2D mammography while also using less radiation.

In addition, the Trust is also the first in the region to introduce the Brevera Breast Biopsy SystemTrust. This will streamline the entire breast biopsy process further, allowing a diagnosis to be made and treatment to begin. 

Sarah Conway, Lead Radiographer in the Southern Trust, said that this new unit will benefit thousands of women every year.

“This is a fantastic addition to our service that will give women a more accurate and detailed diagnosis. 

“Earlier diagnosis can mean more successful treatment and a greater chance of survival. The use of 3D technology is an innovative approach to mammography and helps us to offer patients the very best experience possible during a difficult time. 

“We are delighted to be the first Trust in Northern Ireland to have the 3Dimensions system installed and together with the addition of the Brevera Breast Biopsy System, it provides us with the most advanced diagnostic technology available.”

Barry Conway, Assistant Director for Cancer and Clinical Services said, “We have a very dedicated breast screening team, always striving to continually improve their services. This new equipment is designed to improve visibility of fine details for greater diagnostic confidence allowing us to conduct fast, efficient exams and accelerate reading time. Patients are anxious when they have a breast biopsy so we are delighted to be able to help ease any discomfort and get more accurate results much more quickly to improve the overall experience and get the best possible outcomes from treatment.”

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Rathfriland Motorcycle Club once again have helped donate and deliver almost 500kg of pet food to the USPCA Animal Hospital in Newry.

For more than a decade the club have been making this annual donation, and although the current pandemic has changed almost everything in life as we know it, the need is still there as much as ever for causes like the USPCA Animal Hospital.

The club extend their thanks to Julie of Jollyes Lurgan, Diane of Jollyes Banbridge, and Paul of Jollyes Newry.

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This year’s Northern Ireland Road Safety Awards, which recognise the contribution of individuals and organisations who have worked to improve road safety in their communities, has been launched on Friday 10th September at an event hosted at Applegreen (M1) Southbound.

The awards, now in their seventh year, are organised by the Road Safe NI Charity along with headline sponsors, leading accident management firm CRASH Services

A total of 12 categories are open for nominations and include schools, emergency services, voluntary, public, and private sectors.

Davy Jackson, chairperson of Road Safe NI commented: “We were delighted with the outstanding success and feedback received from the awards over their first five years. With last year’s being interrupted by the pandemic; we now look forward to emulating the previous ceremonies with our 2021 nominees. It is vitally important that we properly recognise the hard work and commitment that goes into helping keep our roads safe.” 

Jonathan McKeown, CEO of CRASH Services commented: “At CRASH Services our commitment is to assist motorists when they need us most. As a business we are passionate about playing our part in helping to promote road safety to all road users and we are delighted to once again be the headline sponsor of the ‘NI Road Safety Awards’. The call is now out for nominations, so whether you are involved in a scheme yourself, have benefited from an initiative or know someone who has spearheaded road safety in your area, these are the awards for them.”

Categories

Education; Primary Schools, Education; Secondary Schools, lollipop person, driving instructor, emergency services person, voluntary sector, open category, LGV/HGV sector, public sector, business sector, commercial vehicle maintenance and lifetime achievement.

Other award category sponsors include Drivetech; from the AA, the Department for Infrastructure (DFI), JMK Solicitors, U105, New Driver NI, Applegreen, Hankook Tyres, TCTS Group, TCTS Compliance Pal and Jack Murphy Jewellers.

The awards ceremony takes place at Cultra Manor, Belfast on Friday 19th November as part of Road Safety Week.

Enter the Road Safety Awards today – Download Application form

All completed forms should be emailed to roadsafenicharity@gmail.com. Alternatively completed nomination forms can be posted to Road Safe NI, 48 Copperthorpe, Drumahoe, Co. Londonderry, BT47 3LT.

The closing date for entries is Friday 22nd October 2021.

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Cancer Fund for Children’s Armagh Support Group led by Karen Brown gave former Ulster, Ireland, British & Irish Lions Captain, Rory Best a warm welcome as he passed through the county on his epic walking challenge in aid of Cancer Fund for Children. With stops in Belleeks, Newtownhamilton, Keady and Derrynoose the Armagh Support Group rallied the local shops, schools, clubs and Armagh City Rugby to ensure Rory was encouraged as he passed through.

To mark Childhood Cancer Awareness month, Rory walked 180 miles across Ireland from Cancer Fund for Children’s therapeutic centre, Daisy Lodge in Newcastle Co. Down to the site of a proposed new Daisy Lodge in Co. Mayo.

Rory took on this challenge in a bid to raise £500,000 for Cancer Fund for Children, a charity that is close to his heart.  For children with cancer, their childhood can be devastated by months of chemotherapy sessions, hospital stays, and time away from their family and friends. Cancer Fund for Children’s mission is to ensure the children don’t have to face this cancer journey alone and last year they provided emotional support to over 1,500 young people.

The charity’s services include restorative breaks at Daisy Lodge which is set at the foot of the Mourne Mountains.  Short breaks allow families to spend quality time together in a safe and nurturing environment, far removed from hospital wards and treatment regimes. However, for every family the charity can support across Ireland there are another six they cannot which is why they urgently need to build a second facility in Co. Mayo.  

Speaking about his challenge Rory said “Walking 180 miles in nine days will be tough but nowhere near as tough as the challenges that families dealing with childhood cancer face. I’m not only taking on this challenge to raise vital funds but also awareness of the impact cancer has on the lives of children and young people.  Already an incredible £370, 236 has been raised and I would like to thank our incredible sponsors, local schools, clubs, and business for getting behind me. If you can, please donate to this wonderful cause”

Details of how to support Rory’s Miles 2 Mayo Challenge

To answer Rory’s call in aid of Cancer Fund for Children, donate via JustGiving: WWW.JUSTGIVING.COM

Instagram: @cancerfundforchildren
Facebook: @cancerfundchildren
Twitter: @cancerfundchild
Website: WWW.CANCERFUNDFORCHILDREN.COM

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Newry and Armagh MLA, Justin McNulty has called for delivery on a Racial Equality Strategy for the North.

McNulty commented, "16 years ago, the Stormont Executive promised to deliver a Racial Equality Strategy for minority ethnic groups, but in 2021 that promise remains unfulfilled.

"This week, I was proud to sign my name to a commitment to advance racial equality alongside my colleague, Councillor Lilian Seenoi-Barr. We are becoming an increasingly vibrant and diverse society - however, hate crimes, inequality, and discrimination are still all too common. Just last week, it was reported that the number of racist crimes in the Newry, Mourne & Down Policing District have trebled in the space of a year. More broadly, the PSNI have revealed that there have been 1,142 racist incidents and 839 racist crimes across the North in the last 12 months, with racist hate crimes now outstripping the number of crimes with a sectarian motivation.

"These statistics are deeply troubling, and Amnesty International have now declared that “Northern Ireland is suffering a hate crime epidemic”. We are constantly treated to some political parties talking about the need for ‘equality and respect’, but once again it seems that those in the political driving seat are happy to offer empty words and platitudes, without actually rolling up their sleeves and delivering on tangible solutions to serious problems.

"In my view, it takes a great deal of bravery for individuals and families to make the decision to move their life to a new country. It’s such an incredible compliment to our country that people have chosen to call this place home – those who have decided to make a new life here in Ireland are enriching our society’s diversity by sharing with us their culture, their values, their skills, and their language.

"Three international human rights agencies have recommended action by government to enhance protections against violence, harassment, intimidation, and discrimination – these recommendations now need to be implemented and given the full force of the law. Minority ethnic groups need to know that they are not only respected, but valued as members of our communities."

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