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Olympians “row-in” as goodwill ambassadors mental health fest

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Killorglin's two Olympians have rowed-in with their support for the 2021 Kerry Mental Health & Well-being Fest by coming on board as ambassadors for the event.

Taking place from tomorrow (Saturday) to next Saturday (October 16), Monika Dukarska and Aileen Crowley, who recently competed for Ireland in the rowing at the Tokyo Games, are asking people of all ages to get involved in the festival for the good of their mental health.

The Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest aims to create awareness of, and schedule events that empower people to engage with, the Five Ways to Wellbeing – Connect | Give | Take Notice | Keep Learning | Be Active.

Monika Dukarska said one of the Five Ways to Well-being was of particular benefit to her during her Olympic preparations.

"When things were getting tough with selection or training sessions, I was journaling and writing down things that went well rather than putting pressure on myself constantly to perform. I was picking very small targets or things that I enjoyed about my day to detach from the pressure of performing all the time. That worked for me superbly. It gave me things to enjoy that I wouldn’t necessarily have taken notice of before.”

The Olympic Rowers, as women in sport, are delighted to see that many of the events during the Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest will be geared towards women and girls.

"I can only see a workplace environment from a sporting perspective and I’m definitely aware that it is different for women, from what I’ve noticed in sport," Aileen Crowley, from Killorglin Rowing Club and Rowing Ireland, said.

"So, to see female-specific events is fantastic because there is a difference, unfortunately, in most workplaces between men and women, and for kids from an early age up to adulthood, but that is starting to balance out.”

WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY

Organised by an interagency steering group, the Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest is held annually to highlight World Mental Health Day October 10.

The organising committee is a collaboration between Connecting for Life Kerry, Healthy Kerry, Kerry County Council, the HSE, NEWKD, SKDP, Kerry Mental Health Association, Jigsaw Kerry, Munster Technological University/Kerry, and Kerry Volunteer Centre.

The Chair of the Steering Committee and Resource Officer for Suicide Prevention in Kerry, Donagh Hennebry, added that "wellbeing is when you’re feeling good and functioning well".

"Our event ambassadors know that it’s not just about being in good physical condition, but it crucially includes the state of your mental health. We are grateful to Monika Dukarska and Aileen Crowley for sharing their knowledge and experience with everyone involved in the 2021 Kerry Mental Health and Well-being Fest.”

Visit HealthyKerry.ie to see the full event schedule.
All events are free, registration is required for some activities and can be done by contacting the organiser directly or use the registration links provided in the brochure.

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Pedestrianisation poll: Our readers have their say

By Sean Moriarty The question of pedestrianisation in the town centre has divided Killarney for years but a survey by the Killarney Advertiser this week shows the town slightly more in favour of it. A total of 37.14 percent of respondents want the pedestrianisation of Plunkett St to remain as it is – closed to […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The question of pedestrianisation in the town centre has divided Killarney for years but a survey by the Killarney Advertiser this week shows the town slightly more in favour of it.

A total of 37.14 percent of respondents want the pedestrianisation of Plunkett St to remain as it is – closed to traffic on a permanent basis while 24.76 want it to go back to its pre-pandemic arrangement where the street was only closed to vehicular traffic between 7pm and 7am each night.

An additional 34.29 percent want to see an increase in pedestrianisation in town centre by extending the Main St arrangement that was in place during the summer. In that period the town’s main thoroughfare was closed to traffic, day and night, during the weekend.

Only 20 percent of the respondents want to abolish pedestrianisation altogether, but that is still a significant number ensuring that this debate will linger on for a long time yet.

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National television exposure for local campaign

By Michelle Crean A local group hosting a life-saving information day tomorrow (Saturday) are to receive huge exposure on national TV after a crew came down to interview them about their campaign. Members of Killarney Cardiac Response Unit (KCRU) – who are planning a ‘Restart a Heart Day’ to raise awareness about life-saving techniques – […]

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By Michelle Crean

A local group hosting a life-saving information day tomorrow (Saturday) are to receive huge exposure on national TV after a crew came down to interview them about their campaign.

Members of Killarney Cardiac Response Unit (KCRU) – who are planning a ‘Restart a Heart Day’ to raise awareness about life-saving techniques – invited journalist Paul Byrne and Virgin Media TV crew to town this week.

It’s hoped their campaign will be broadcast tonight (Friday) or tomorrow (Saturday).

The KCRU event takes place tomorrow in ANAM Arts and Cultural Centre between 10.30am and 4pm as part of the European Restart a Heart Day. It’ll include CPR demos, public information, an art display, a video launch w️ith many prizes to be won.

“The crew interviewed Community Responder Helen Duggan who explained the events taking place on Saturday,” Kevin O’Leary from KCRU told the Killarney Advertiser.

“European Restart a Heart Day was founded with the support of the European parliament and takes place on October 16 every year. We’re spreading the message that 20 minutes of your time could make all the difference saving a life.”

In 2021, the focus of the event is on survivors with the hashtag #CPRSavedMyLife.

“With this campaign we want to create awareness that everyone can learn CPR and facilitate BLS courses in schools and public locations.”

He said they hope that Kerry TDs Danny Healy-Rae, Brendan Griffin and Minister for Education Norma Foley will be in attendance throughout the day, and the public are invited to attend.

“Find out how simple actions can save lives. Prizes include a three day First Aid course valued at €300, two First Aid kits, and a voucher for a local business.”

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