Craoibhín Ballina is a socially inclusive project that supports the ageing population of the Ballina district and is located at Cathedral Road, Ballina.
Established in 2008 through the initiative of Moy Valley Resources IRD, Craoibhín, meaning “little branch”, was formerly known as the Over 55s Club but is now open to any adult who would like to make a friend in the community or learn a new skill.
The organisation’s ethos promotes positive wellbeing and social inclusion to all adults in a happy, safe, and welcoming environment. It aims to do so by encouraging people to participate in social activities that promote a fulfilled healthy lifestyle.
Craoibhin operates as a signposting service in the community by linking in with other government agencies in the social care realm. Craoibhín also reaches out to people who are unable to attend the centre by providing a community bus, shopping transport services and household maintenance with the Lend a Hand Programme.
A registered charity, Craoibhín is part funded by Pobal and is supported by community contributions.
Craoibhín Ballina is governed by a voluntary board of management and currently employs two full time staff, three part time staff, six community employment and one TUS staff members.
The centre’s manager is Emma Donoghue.
Emma has a Post Grad in Creative Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development, a BA in Contemporary Art, and a diploma in Disability Awareness. Emma has supported people in various communities for over twenty years and is a strong advocate for social inclusion.
If you wish to learn more, or to join Craoibhín Ballina, please get in touch!
WHO CAN HELP?
Emma, a Ballycastle native, joined Moy Valley Resources in August 2021, as the Community Services Programme (CSP) Manager.
She is responsible for the day to day operations of Craoibhín Ballina, formerly known as the Over 55 Club and over the past two years, has transformed the club and its programme of activities, rebranding it and throwing open its doors to everyone in the community.
Craoibhín now offers to anyone in the community anything from a cup of tea and a chat, to a walk using the newly acquired Nordic poles, or a Spanish, art, pottery or even Mandarin classes!
Outside of her day job, Emma is an artist, with a background in the equestrian industry, and has a record of working to support people with additional needs in the community. She in the past has founded charities in Leinster that marry these two passions.
Never one to be idle, in her spare time, as well as studying, Emma presents her own show on Ballina Community Radio BCRFM. A keen diver, she is on the board of Gráinne Uaile Sub Aqua Club, and most recently has volunteered as PRO for Ballina Salmon Festival.