By Joe Barrett
The Laois Domestic Abuse Service is among 35 community groups, sports clubs, and organisations from all over Ireland who were announced as national finalists in the National Lottery Good Causes Awards.
The service was stablished in November 2006. The charity is the only specialist service in Laois working to provide support, information and advocacy services to women and children/young people subjected to domestic abuse and coercive control. Along with funding through the HSE National Lottery scheme, the domestic abuse service also provides services such as Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy, to help women and children recover from traumatic events in their lives. It stops difficult memories causing so much distress by helping the brain to reprocess them properly.
It will compete with four other organisations in the Health and Wellbeing category of the National Lottery Good Causes Awards
The awards honour the work and achievements of thousands of projects, clubs and individuals from all over Ireland who, with the help of National Lottery Good Causes funding, have had an impact on their local communities.
Nearly 30c in every €1 spent on National Lottery games goes back to Good Causes all over the country.
Each of the 35 finalists will receive €1,000 and a hand-crafted trophy and proceed to the grand final in which there are seven categories: Arts & Culture, Community, Health & Wellbeing, Heritage, Irish language, Sport and Youth. The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony which takes place on Saturday 1 October in the Kilashee House Hotel, Co. Kildare, where each of the seven category winners will receive €10,000 and the overall Good Cause of the Year will take home an additional €25,000.
Gráinne Seoige, who will host the awards for the third consecutive year, said: “While last year’s event truly was unique as we had to go virtual due to the Covid restrictions, I am looking forward to meeting this year’s fantastic finalists in person. Hearing stories of triumph, strength and endurance have stood out as highlights from my previous two experiences of presenting the Awards and I am certain that this year will be no different. Seeing how communities from all over Ireland help and look out for each other is a truly inspiring part of the night and one that I am looking forward to playing a part in.”
Chair of this year’s judging panel Sonya Lennon said: “Last month, we announced 118 County winners from all over the country who all had such inspiring stories about the work they do within their communities. Narrowing that same list down to 35 finalists was certainly not an easy task as all the entries were truly moving. The entire judging process has really proved just how important the Good Causes Awards are in recognizing the incredible work being carried out by groups all over the country. I am now looking forward to meeting the finalists and hearing even more about the wonderful work they all do.”
The 35 National Lottery Good Causes Awards finalists can be found here