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Coping with losing a job



The gradual reopening of the economy here in Ireland and globally highlights the economic consequences of COVID-19.


Some businesses are making the difficult decision not to reopen resulting in unemployment for thousands of individuals. The impact of losing your job or being made redundant is felt financially and personally. For many people a job is more than financial security, it facilitates the sharing of your skills and knowledge with others, building up a range of experiences in your role and gives you the chance to socialise with colleagues and customers. The void following losing a job can be felt deeply both personally and professionally. It is important to give yourself time to process how you are feeling about it and then try to put a plan in place.

Coming to terms with the job loss can take some time. It is a time of personal transition. It is important to focus on firstly building back up your confidence.

The following suggestions may help that process along:


Write down how you are feeling about what is happening. Getting it down on paper validates the impact of the loss.

Talk to a good listener:

Choose a family member, friend or professional who will be understanding and empathic.
Think about everything you have learned personally and professionally from your role. Even if you are feeling negative about employment possibilities at the moment you will always have the skills, knowledge and experience which you can use in a much greater variety of settings than you may have thought possible. Try to look at this loss as an opportunity to re-evaluate your career, re-assess your skills set and adapt to a rapidly changing world of employment.

Personal Career Action Plan

Once you have given some time to the aforementioned process it is hugely helpful to put a personal career plan into action to facilitate getting back to work. Over the coming weeks we will look at the steps involved in that process including the following; Implementing a structure for job hunting; Outlining your core skills and creating a professional profile; Identifying your ideal role; Networking, updating your CV and cover letter; and preparing effectively for face-to-face and online interviews.

Springboard courses – Applications now open

The Government has just launched this year's free and subsidised higher education places which focus on areas of skills shortages. 13,000 places will commence in 2020, with the additional 4,000 places coming on stream over the remaining two years. For people who are unemployed, those looking to return to the workforce and those in employment with a great opportunity to up-skill or re-skill in areas in which employers need skilled workers. Places are available on courses in a wide range of skills areas, including artificial intelligence, smart factory technology, sustainable energy, medical device technology and cybersecurity. The courses are providing relevant skills for those affected by the COVID-19 crisis and range from Level 6 (Certificate) to Level 9 (Masters) on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ). But not all courses are full awards. Many are 12 months in duration and lead to minor awards or special purposes awards. Further details about eligibility, courses available and how to apply can be found on

A series of podcasts based on courses, application tips and interviews with graduates of Springboard courses is available on and is well worth a listen for those considering up-skilling and returning to education as an adult.

Niamh Dwyer, Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore & PRO of Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She can be contacted on

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Better late than never Christmas present for St Francis Special School

By Sean Moriarty St Francis Special School received a very late Christmas present this week – a specially adapted bike for the pupils to use. Husband and wife team Ciaran […]




By Sean Moriarty

St Francis Special School received a very late Christmas present this week – a specially adapted bike for the pupils to use.

Husband and wife team Ciaran and Karen Dwyer, directors of Guerin Engineering and Pumps Ltd in Kilcummin, presented the special adapted bicycle to the staff and pupils at the Beaufort school on Tuesday.

After seeing an online request last December that the school needed the bike, they decided to gift one.

They contacted Glencar Medical, a Dublin-based firm that specialises in the supply of equipment to schools like St Francis, and ordered the bicycle.

However, nothing is straightforward in the current climate, Brexit, COVID and war all contributed to a delay in getting the bike to Ireland. Once it was in Dublin there were further delays in sourcing the special straps that St Francis’ children need to ride the bike safely.

It all came to a happy ending this week when the Dwyers were finally able to present their Christmas present to the school.

“We saw this request and we contacted the school and said we wanted to buy one, they told us where to get one, and we ordered it,” Karen told the Killarney Advertiser.

“We had it paid for by the end of the year but then it took three months to get it into the country. It took more time to import the specialist parts. The costs were increasing but we did not mind at all.”

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Jordan Lee to tell his story to the county’s schools

Paralympian Jordan Lee will share his experiences with schools all over Kerry. The Killarney man has embarked on a countywide tour ‘Jordan’s Drive’ in association with Kelliher’s Garage, a series […]




Paralympian Jordan Lee will share his experiences with schools all over Kerry.

The Killarney man has embarked on a countywide tour ‘Jordan’s Drive’ in association with Kelliher’s Garage, a series of informal talks on his achievements and how he overcame his disability to reach the top of his chosen sport.

The 21-year-old was born with a foreshortened left arm known as amniotic band syndrome but has enjoyed a successful sports career which included representing Ireland at the Tokyo Olympics last summer.

Now he wants to share his story and inspire other students to follow their dreams.

His tour started last week at Colaiste na Sceilge in Cahersiveen and over the next few weeks, depending on his training schedule, will visit schools in Firies, Milltown, and Killarney.

“Don’t be afraid of people with disabilities or different backgrounds,” he said. “A few years ago there was only typical people in classrooms – you never came across people with disabilities or from various different countries. It is a lot more mixed now. I want to inspire people to treat everyone on the same level.”

‘Jordan’s Drive’ is made possible thanks to his role as a brand ambassador for Kelliher’s Garage, dealer principal, Tim Kelliher explained to the Killarney Advertiser.

“Having got to know Jordan so well over the last couple of years we have come to realise how much of an inspiration he is so we decided to ask him to hop into his Toyota CHR Hybrid and bring his story out into the highways and byways of the Kingdom,” he said.

“Headlined ‘Jordans Drive’ and organised by my marketing team headed by Yvonne McMahon they have travelled to many of the schools around Kerry from Cahersiveen to Beaufort, Killorglin and with other dates planned for Firies and Milltown to name but a few. He has spoken his many words of wisdom to the children who have been in awe of the journey and his achievements, and we at Kelliher’s Garage are delighted and proud to have him as our brand ambassador.”

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