Council Chair hosts reception for 25th anniversary of Garrison Women’s Group

23rd February 2024

Garrison Women's Group Reception (14.02.24) (1)

Recently the Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Councillor Thomas O’Reilly, hosted a reception to mark the 25th anniversary of Garrison Women’s Group.

The following is the speech delivered by the Chair at the reception:

Fellow Councillors and Ladies

As Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, I am delighted to welcome you all here to The Townhall, Enniskillen for this reception to mark the 25th anniversary of Garrison Women’s Group.

Garrison Women’s Group was established in September 1998 having recognised that in the remote and rural setting of Garrison in the far West of Fermanagh there were limited social outlets for local women.

I was delighted to learn that the Council was able to support the establishment of the Group through its Seeding Grant which provides assistance to Groups in the first 12 months of operation.

Since the Group’s inception, you have held weekly meetings on a Wednesday with approximately 20 active members and other ladies who keep in touch and up-to-date with activities and events through email and social media.

The weekly meetings provide an opportunity for you to meet up and socialise and also to develop new skills with the variety of activities you organise each week.  These activities include seasonal gardening, cookery demonstrations, watercolour painting, stone pebble art and gentle exercises to name a few.  You also engage with other organisations to provide valuable advice such as First Aid, Fire Safety and using the Defibrillator.

Like many of our rural villages, transport can be challenging, however, such is the close knit community of Garrison and the friendships which have been developed as a result of the Group, I understand that many of you share transport to ensure that you can attend the meetings.

Fermanagh and Omagh District Council is committed to ensuring that our people are healthy and well physically, mentally and emotionally.  It also aims to ensure that our communities are inclusive, safe, resilient and empowered.

The rural nature of our District is also unique, therefore, it is important that we continue to support and preserve our rural communities.  Garrison Women’s Group is an excellent example of how we can achieve these commitments and ensure that our rural communities are resilient and empowered now and in the future.

On behalf of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, and on my own behalf, I would like to commend each and every member of Garrison Women’s Group, past and present, for having the initiative to develop the Group and for sustaining the group over the last 25 years.

I would like to wish you every success for the future and I am confident that the Group will continue to go from strength to strength in the years ahead.

Thank you.