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KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Help with the Cost of Living




Prices have risen this year and you may be struggling to pay for the everyday things you need to support yourself and your family.

The Government announced some new Cost of Living supports on February 21.

People getting social welfare payments

In April 2023, if you are getting the Working Family Payment or any weekly long-term social welfare payment that qualifies for the Christmas Bonus, you will get a once-off payment of €200. Long term payments include State Pensions, Carers Allowance, Carers Benefit, Farm Assist, Disability Allowance, Invalidity Pension and One-Parent Family payments.

You will only get one €200 payment even if you get more than one qualifying social welfare payment. In June 2023, you will get an extra €100 for each child with your monthly Child Benefit payment. Child Benefit is paid to parents or guardians of children under 16 years. You may also get it, if your child is aged 16 or 17 years in full-time education or full-time training or has a disability and cannot support themselves

State exam fees

If you have a child taking the Leaving Certificate or Junior Cycle examination, there will be no exam fees in 2023.

School transport

If your child uses the School Transport Scheme, the fee for the school year 2023-2024 will be reduced to €50 for a primary school child and €75 for a secondary school child. The maximum fee for a family will be €125.
The scheme provides transport for children who live over a certain distance from the appropriate school. Even if your child meets the criteria for school transport, a place is not guaranteed.

Help for business owners

If you are a business owner, you will have easier access to the Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme (TBESS) to help with businesses energy costs. Your business will qualify if it has had a 50% increase in electricity or gas costs (up from 30% increase). The amount you get back will increase to 50% of the cost of eligible electricity and gas bills (up from 40%).
The Scheme is extended to May 31.

VAT will remain at the 9% reduced rate until August 31, 2023 for hospitality services, and until October 31, 2023 for gas and electricity. Read more about help with the cost of living on

Additional Needs Payment

The Additional Needs Payment can help you with an expense that you cannot pay from your weekly income. The amount that you can get depends on your circumstances and the type of help you need. You can get the Additional Needs Payment for:

An increase in your fuel or electricity costs
Essential repairs to property, including motor vehicles and replacing household appliances and furniture
Funeral costs
Deposits for private rented accommodation
Bedding and cooking utensils, if you are setting up home for the first time
Food, clothing and shelter after an emergency event such as a fire or flood
Recurring travel costs to hospital
Visiting a relative in hospital or prison

This is not a complete list, other expenses can be covered too.

For anyone needing information, advice or have an advocacy issue, you can call a member of the local Citizens Information team in Kerry on 0818 07 7860, they will be happy to assist and make an appointment if necessary. The offices are staffed from Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm. Alternatively you can email on or log on to for further information.



Killarney and District Motor Club members honoured by Motorsport Ireland

By Cormac Casey Several members of Killarney and District Motor Club were honoured at the Motorsport Ireland awards lunch in Dublin on Wednesday. The highlight of the event is the […]




By Cormac Casey

Several members of Killarney and District Motor Club were honoured at the Motorsport Ireland awards lunch in Dublin on Wednesday.

The highlight of the event is the announcement of the sport’s top awards.

Kilkenny’s Jack Brennan (19) was named Young Rally Driver of the Year, while Wexford native Jack Byrne was named Young Racing Driver of the Year and the International Driver of the Year award went to recently crowned FIA Junior World Rally Champion, William Creighton.

Muckross-based co-driver Noel O’Sullivan was presented with his Irish Tarmac Rally Championship winning trophy.

This year saw the introduction of the Motorsport Ireland President’s Awards which celebrate the achievements of  clubs and organisations.

Killarney and District Motor Club won in the innovation category for their work with their KDMC 2 initiative thanks to the efforts of the club’s vice chairman Mike O’Shea.

Rally Rescue teams were also recognised and the club’s Mike Cleary picked up an award for his role he played in what was a difficult year for rescue crew operators.

Tom O’Riordan, who looks after ambulance procurement on the club’s events, was presented with an FIA Volunteer Pin by Motorsport Ireland President Aiden Harper.

Killarney Advertiser Journalist Sean Moriarty was presented with an award for best use of of PR and media in 2023.


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Kerry Mental Health and Wellbeing Fest ‘thank you’ event at Brehon

Participation in the 2023 Kerry Mental Health and Wellbeing Fest has grown by more than 100% since 2020 with 98% of those who gave feedback saying they would attend similar […]




Participation in the 2023 Kerry Mental Health and Wellbeing Fest has grown by more than 100% since 2020 with 98% of those who gave feedback saying they would attend similar events again in 2024.

Feedback from more than 100 people who attended this year’s Fest events from 7th to 14th October was positive with 91% stating they were satisfied.
The Kerry Mental Health and Wellbeing Fest is held annually over the course of a week to highlight World Mental Health Day on October 10.
It aims to raise awareness of the available supports and services in Kerry as well as empower people to engage with the ‘Five Ways to Wellbeing’ through offering a dynamic and interactive programme of events.
99% percent of respondents, most of whom identified as female, said they would recommend the Fest to friends next year. Some key notes for improvement included a request for more events with wider variety throughout the county.
The Chair of the Interagency Steering Group, John Drummey from Kerry Mental Health Association, said: “We wish to extend a heartfelt thanks to event organisers, community groups, businesses, funders and partners that facilitated the Fest’s dynamic and interactive programme of events in 2023. We are encouraged to see such growth in numbers attending the Fest events with a 50% increase from 2022. We are already making plans for the Fest from 5 to 12t October 2024 and we are looking forward to building on this year’s successes. That said, there is always room for improvement and we would welcome suggestions for new events and activities.”
Many of the event organisers attended a ‘thank-you’ event at the Brehon Hotel, Killarney, courtesy of the Kerry Volunteer Centre to coincide with the annual International Volunteer Day, December 5.
The Kerry Mental Health and Wellbeing Fest was organised by an interagency steering group made up of local agencies that support wellbeing in our community.
The organising committee is a collaboration between Connecting for Life Kerry, Healthy Kerry, Kerry County Council, Kerry Recreation & Sports Partnership, the HSE, NEWKD, SKDP, Kerry Mental Health Association, Jigsaw Kerry, Munster Technological University/Kerry, KDYS, Kerry Volunteer Centre and Family Resource Centres throughout the county.

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