A Sense of Humour is just Common Sense Dancing.
Pádraig met a few old friends at an Irish language event organised by DCU library in St. Patrick’s College, the opening night of an exhibition celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of Cathal Ó Sandair, the most popular Irish-language writer ever. Róisín Adams was in conversation with Caoimhe Nic Lochlainn, Fiontar Scoil na Gaeilge, with Sadhbh Devlin, also Fiontar Scoil na Gaeilge, being the MC for the evening. It was another relatively small, but intimate and extremely friendly gathering where Pádraig really felt at home.
During the week, we had a few tough days, with a bad cold hitting us, except Pádraig. An Saol had a visit from the Irish Minister of Disability who had been invited by one of An Saol’s clients to come and see the place.
Anne Rabbitte was very impressed and extremely supportive of the Centre and the work of the An Saol Foundation. For her it was clear that the Centre’s work had to continue – and in its own permanent home.
Listening to what sounded like very common sense reminded me of where we have come from. Nearly 30 people are now attending the An Saol Centre and eight families are part of the An Saol Project that had been established for three to five families less than three years ago. We found and adapted a building, employed staff and are now delivering a service for people who up to then had been completely abandoned. We are delivering what expert government reports had been calling for for more than a decade. In the An Saol Centre, people again found hope that had been taken away from them.
Yes, of course, we can do even better. We need to improve on what we are doing, and we have to do more: create a better social space and add respite and living quarters for those who need them. (By the way – if you know someone who could part with a field in North Dublin for An Saol, please let me know.) And we can do with more help from like-minded people, from volunteer-drivers to collect clients who don’t have their own transport, to someone with a few hours a day to help us keep the place clean and tidy, to a Programme Coordinator to organise an efficient and effective service. A good send of humour is required for all positions.
All the other stuff I hear from those who really haven’t smelled the coffee yet is just noise that I will take with a sense of humour. It will keep my common sense on the dance floor.