15 June 2012 No Comments by The Northern Standard

The committee, parents, and children of Carrickmacross Community Childcare wish to sincerely thank everyone that braved the heavy rain last Friday, 8th June, to attend the official opening of their new sensory garden.
A large crowd gathered into the Workhouse where they were warmly welcomed by Eileen Gomez, chairperson of the fundraising committee, who outlined the benefits of a sensory garden to children with additional needs.
While Carrickmacross Community Childcare has been in operation since 2002 and has always provided playground facilities to children in attendance, until now they were unable to fully meet the requirements of children with additional needs.
Eileen went on to describe how the dream of a sensory garden, which was first discussed early last year, became a reality. A slideshow of photos taken during the construction played in the background while she explained that the garden, which cost approximately €3,500 to construct, consists of 1,050 sq. ft. (30ft x 35ft). So now, all sixty children the Preschool, Naíonra, and Afterschool services can be fully included in playground fun!
Outgoing Carrickmacross Town Mayor, Noel Keelan, offered his congratulations to all those involved in developing the sensory garden. He acknowledged the funding received both from Monaghan County Council and Carrickmacross Town Council, and praised the commitment of the volunteers that fundraised for, and built, the garden.
The attendees were then invited to explore the sensory garden, which contains features for children to see, smell and touch, including flowers and plants, a sandpit, a water fount, an art area, and a roofed decking area for these rainy Irish days! Children enjoyed face-painting while photographs were taken, and then everyone gathered back into the Workhouse for a cuppa.
So many people in the community played their part in creating the sensory garden that it would be impossible to thank everyone, however, the children, parents, and committee of Carrickmacross Community Childcare would especially like to thank the following:
First and foremost, the hardworking volunteers – both the fundraising committee that organised the drive last summer (which included a BBQ in Corduff), and those that worked Saturdays and evenings since January to build the sensory garden; Monaghan County Council and staff for granting €1,200 through their ‘Community Development Fund’ towards the garden; Deirdre Byrne, Community Education Facilitator with Co. Monaghan VEC, for providing their inspirational Project Manager, Barry Kavanagh, who designed the garden and supported the volunteers; Carrickmacross Town Council and staff for granting €250 towards the garden; Staff of the Workhouse for facilitating the project; Carrickmacross Fire Brigade for filling their water drums; Olive Allen for donating her face painting talents for the official opening; The Department of Children through Pobal for grant aiding their Preschool, Naíonra, and Afterschool services; FÁS through Carrick and Donaghmoyne Development Groups for supporting this childcare service since 2002 with Community Employment (CE) workers. Last, but not least, nothing could have been achieved without the generosity and good will of the community, especially during fundraising efforts last summer.
If you have any queries regarding the sensory garden, please feel free to contact Carrickmacross Community Childcare at 087 0670851.

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