Monday, March 27, 2023

Ireland’s first Daffodil Bench was unveiled by the Irish Cancer Society in Skerries last November. Pictured are Rachel Morrogh, Director of Advocacy, Irish Cancer Society with Wendy Martin, ICS Advocacy Champion. Picture: APPHOTO

A BRIGHT yellow Daffodil Bench that will spread some cheer as well as vital information will be installed in Portlaoise this year for the Irish Cancer Society (ICS).

At the latest meeting of Portlaoise Municipal District, all seven of the town’s  councillors lodged a motion calling for an ICS bench.

They asked Laois Co Council to allow the use of an existing bench on the South Circular Road, near the ESB centre, which would be painted daffodil yellow by the Portlaoise Men’s Shed.

The motion in the names of councillors Barry Walsh, Thomasina Connell, Willie Aird, Catherine Fitzgerald, John Joe Fennelly, Caroline Dwane-Stanley and Marie Tuohy was passed unanimously.

Speaking on behalf of all councillors, cathaoirleach Barry Walsh explained that, once the bench is painted, a QR Code plaque with all relevant logos will be attached. This will link people directly to ICS supports and services.

Cllr Walsh said: “This bench will also be a place where people can take time to think things through and set things straight.”

Cllr John Joe Fennelly said he hoped to see the ICS benches installed throughout the county.

Ireland’s first Daffodil Bench was unveiled by the ICS in Skerries, Dublin last November. The yellow benches are a symbol of hope and support for anyone facing a cancer diagnosis. In 2022, an estimated 44,000 people received a cancer diagnosis in Ireland.

The ICS aims to have 50 Daffodil Benches installed nationwide by the end of this year.

The project is a partnership between the ICS, the Irish Men’s Sheds Association and city and county councils across the country.

Councils will donate an existing bench that local Men’s Sheds will prepare, paint and install the QR code plaque on. This code will also link to the Irish Men’s Shed’s Association website, as well as ICS supports, services and information.

Each shed will receive a ‘Daffodil Bench Kit’ that includes a style guide, QR code plaque, communications guide and community notices to be placed in local shops in the run-up to the local launch.


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