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Opportunities for tourism and hospitality employees to upskill

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The temporary loss of approximately 100,000 jobs in the tourism and hospitality sectors nationally has decimated the industry in the short term. Kerry and Donegal have been identified as the counties most affected by job losses in tourism with approximately 15,700 tourism and hospitality employees currently unemployed in Kerry. This has had a devastating impact on local businesses, families and individuals.

It looks likely that many parts of the sector may not open until the summer. As a result, two new skills programmes have been developed by Solas and the Education and Training Boards (ETBs) in conjunction with the Irish Hotels Federation and Fáilte Ireland.

Details of the programme were announced by Minister Simon Harris recently and they will provide a much needed boost to employees in the sector. The courses are aimed at upskilling and reskilling employees who work in hospitality and tourism to ensure that the sector can grow and develop in the future and to optimize career prospects for employees in the future. The Developing Leaders for Hospitality programme aims to equip employees with enhanced skills to lead and manage their teams effectively and includes modules such as operational skills, customer care, people management, financial and controls, strategic planning, change management, sustainability and digital skills. The Leadership and Management programme aims to upskill supervisory staff which will help employers to deal with the current business environment and focuses on motivating workers, managing change, effective decision-making, managing remote workers, problem-solving and writing for business. The diploma adds further modules in leadership skills, performance and project management.

Course Delivery and Cost

Qualifications are available at Levels 5 and 6 on the QQI National Framework of Qualifications and will be delivered by local ETBs, online with tutor support or when feasible, a blend of online and in-person training. Delivery will be flexible to suit both the business and employee needs. The Level 5 programme can be completed in three months and the Level 6 in three to six months. It is expected it will be rolled out from March. Employers can receive a subsidy of up to 70% of the course fee depending on various factors relating to the company and there is no cost to the employee.
Bernadette Randles, Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of the Irish Hotel’s Federation is optimistic about job opportunities in the sector once the country starts to open up and is confident of recovery in 2022-2023.

"I would strongly urge people to take the opportunity to up upskill now with one of the many course options available through the ETB, Fáilte Ireland or Springboard so it will develop their career further in the sector going forward,” she said.

So, while the short term may seem bleak for anyone in the tourism and hospitality sector this initiative provides a great opportunity to develop professional skills which will help to future proof careers as this and other sectors begin to recover.

To check eligibility and further details log on to www.solas.ie or contact Mick Ryan, Business Support Unit with Kerry ETB on 066 7149690 or business@kerrycollege.ie.

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Happy Birthday Sham

Well-known Killarney character Seamus ‘Sham’ Courtney celebrated his 75th birthday yesterday (Thursday) at his favourite town centre watering hole. Sham who has entertained countless tourists over the years with his pronounced Kerry accent is one of the town’s best loved characters. One video recorded by RTE’s Today Show around the time of his 71st birthday […]

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Well-known Killarney character Seamus ‘Sham’ Courtney celebrated his 75th birthday yesterday (Thursday) at his favourite town centre watering hole.

Sham who has entertained countless tourists over the years with his pronounced Kerry accent is one of the town’s best loved characters.

One video recorded by RTE’s Today Show around the time of his 71st birthday has amassed 7.5 million viewers.

Yesterday he visited one of his favourite pubs, Jack C O’Shea’s on High St, where proprietors John and Joan O’Shea and their ever-present dog Ginny placed decorative balloons around the bar to mark the occasion.

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Killarney acts excited to play outdoor mini music event

By Michelle Crean ANSEO, Kerry’s newest outdoor mini music and arts event, plans to have six shows at three venues, including Killarney Town Centre next weekend. On Sunday September 26, there’s plans for an afternoon show by The Gleneagle Concert Band, Pauline Scanlon with Mick Galvin, and The Small Hours from 2 to 4.30pm. Later that […]

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By Michelle Crean

ANSEO, Kerry’s newest outdoor mini music and arts event, plans to have six shows at three venues, including Killarney Town Centre next weekend.

On Sunday September 26, there’s plans for an afternoon show by The Gleneagle Concert Band, Pauline Scanlon with Mick Galvin, and The Small Hours from 2 to 4.30pm. Later that evening, from 7 to 9.30pm, acts such as The Rising, Cathal Flaherty, and Truly Diverse, will play.

It’s all part of two weekends of entertainment including tomorrow (Saturday) at the Town Square Listowel where Eoghan Duignan, John Browne and Brendan O’Sullivan, Tim O’Shea & Afro Trad Ireland, as well as Liam O’Connor and Family play from 1pm to 3.30pm, followed by an evening show from 6pm to 8.30pm featuring Seamus Begley and Donogh Hennessy, Sephira, and Peter Staunton and Super Ceili.

In Tralee on Saturday September 25, acts such as Inish, Lorraine Nash, and Oracle will put on a show from 2pm to 4.30pm, with Mark Leen: ‘the man with many voices’, Aisling Urwin & Andy Yelen, and Renovator playing from 7pm to 9.30pm.

ANSEO Kerry, supported by Kerry County Council, has been created to celebrate and support local artists and get them back out performing via a live outdoor music event for those who love Kerry and its talent.

Culture and local art will also be celebrated on a big screen at all of these events highlighting local talent including super works from visual arts Kerry, Cill Rialaig Arts Centre, Me + The Moon, Kerry Biosphere, St John’s Theatre, as well as Landscapes + Seascapes film, animations and mapping.

“It’s been an unbelievable feeling to be back performing again after what was the longest 18 months for everyone but I feel especially musicians because we were the first to close and just about the last to open again properly,” Cathal from Beaufort, and now living in Killarney town, told the Killarney Advertiser.

“When I read the news a few weeks back that we can perform indoors again it didn’t quite sink in until I was actually playing indoors a few days later. Since then my phone has been hopping with bookings and I’m just so grateful for anyone who has booked me so far. It’s still not entirely back to normal but I won’t be complaining for a while as it’s just so great to be back at it again. I want to give a special thanks to the guys behind ANSEO who have booked me for their Killarney run of shows which I’m really excited for, and also to be sharing the stage with two other incredible Kerry acts – The Rising and Truly Diverse. I know the Truly Diverse lads very well over the last decade so I know it’s gonna be a great show and I can’t wait to get up on that stage and play my own songs in front of real people again!”

ANSEO Kerry will be a family-friendly, alcohol-free, ticket only event for 200 people in pods of four. The concerts will be free of charge and there is expected to be much demand for these socially distanced shows. Tickets are limited but the shows will also be streamed online for those who can’t be there in person. ANSEO Kerry is being run in-line with full Government guidelines and protocols in place.

Tickets are bookable via www.anseokerry.com.

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