On 5 January 2015, the construction of the second Phase of The ACRE Project began. Phase II will incorporate two polytunnels for all-year growing of crops, a second building to double the size of the existing space available for youth and community, and as a small wind turbine to produce free electricity for, at least, the next 15 years.
The overall cost of Phase II will be in the region of €300,000 and The ACRE Project has received a generous grant under the Rural Development Programme (2007-2013) – the Kildare Leader initiative.
The Board of The ACRE Project has a schedule of fundraisers laid out to secure the yearly running costs of circa €30K. The work of our volunteers in fundraising is sincerely appreciated.
A huge thanks to all of our 2014 Sponsors. It’s great to get local support for this great cause.
- Absolutely Fabulous Florists
- Blake’s Pharmacy
- Celbridge Jewellers
- Celbridge Print
- Cllr Frank O’Rourke, FF
- Douglas Newman Good
- Fitzpatricks’ Butchers
- Glenroyal Leisure Centre
- InfoMarex Translations
- Michaelangelo’s Restaurant
- Nally’s Super Valu
- Olan Neeson Framing
- The Mill Gym
- Walsh’s Pharmacy
- Base Celbridge
- Celbridge and District Credit Union
- Top of the Town Cleaners
Working in collaboration with its volunteers and local community groups, the core group have organised a number of activities on-site. These have included a successful series of “planting days” under the supervision of a trained horticulturist; the running of an eight week lifestyle programme Mindfulness Practice which was offered to local parents; and in conjunction with the Celbridge Artistic Group held an open taster day, Creative Explosion, attended by over 450 adults and children. This was a day of interactive workshops in a variety of artistic and creative forms and was part of an initiative to promote creative culture in the community across many crafts and disciplines.
Surveys conducted on the day indicated that people were more than willing to volunteer and help in future activities in The ACRE Project and participants indicated that they were looking for a variety of courses including:
- Film & Photography – Sculpture
- Painting – Art & craft courses
- Creative writing – Community Art Projects
- Music Appreciation – Music Classes
- Drama Skills – Youth Drama
- Community Mothers Programme – Mens Coffee Club
- Personal Development Programmes – Mindfullness Training
- Yoga Sessions
Based on the success of Phase One and on interest to date, it is clear that there is a need to develop the project further. In order to achieve this, it is proposed that in Phase Two of The ACRE Project the following are provided:
- a hybrid wind turbine and solar panel electricity generating system in line with the environmental and green nature of the project;
- a second resource building to cater for current demand and new programmes;
- a sensory ornamental garden, for both individuals with learning difficulties and physical challenges, and as a space for the community to visit, contemplate and relax;
- office equipment;
- security fencing;
- tools, machinery and a tool shed to secure them, and
- two polytunnels, to allow for the production of a greater variety of produce and to greater facilitate teaching and working all year round.
B.A., H. Dip. Ed.
Retired Principal Teacher of Rathcoffey National School. Director & Chair of Celbridge Community Centre Ltd, Camelton Enterprises Ltd and Guardian Administration Ltd (a Community Employment Project employing 26 persons). Mairead has extensive experience and involvment in community groups from the Celbridge Community Council to Day Care Club for Older People to the Youth Café at Celbridge Mill. Her interests include youth development, provision of facilities for older persons, provision of facilities and programmes for persons with disabilities, Community Development, Drama, Theatre, Music, Sport, Current Affairs, Politics and History.
His skills include People Development, Community Projects (Youth Café, summer camps, Honorary President of Soccer Skills for Fun), Communications, IT Development, Volunteer Management. He spent four years in the Social Communications Dept at the Salesian HQ, Rome, with responsibility for training members in social communications. He is currently Director of SDB MEDIA Publishing House and Editor of a quarterly magazine, The Salesian Bulletin and is interested in photography, graphic design and audio visual presentations.
SDB, B.Sc, B.A. (Hons), M.Ed., Diploma in Counselling
As well as his role as a Salesian priest, Fr Paddy has worked as a teacher and is an Education Officer with the Salesians. He has vast experience in education and youth work. He has been involved with community based youth work in inner city parishes, he ran community based summer programmes and has worked in special needs education.
B. Comm, FCA (Chartered Accountant)
Former Finance Director Coca Cola Bottlers Ireland and Group Finance Director – Operations of Coca Cola Hellenenic and Audit Manager with PwC. Michael has considerable experience in finance, marketing, change management, corporate governance, coaching and mentoring.
Director InfoMarex Translations – International Translation Agency, Business Consultant, Recruitment and Personnel Consultant. Michael is a member of many organisations including the North Kildare Chamber of Commerce, the TCD Senate and the Irish Writers Centre. He is heavily involved in local community and parish work serving on the Celbridge & Straffan Parish Finance Committee. He has a keen interest in writing and gardening.
B.Sc., B.Sc (Comp).
Deputy Principal in Salesian College Celbridge. Dominic has worked with young people since the early 1980s in various capacities from Summer Camp director to teacher of maths and science. He is on ICT Advisory committees with the Department of Education and Skills and has been the Irish representative on projects in both Europe and Latin America.
Coming from an early background as a Senior Executive in the financial services sector Ken has held positions in the areas of Finance, Facilities Management and Information Technology. Ken later took a break from the industry to pursue private projects in Management and Property advice together with a further involvement in Technology and Product Innovation based opportunities. Over the last 25 years, he has had extensive involvement with Community and Youth Development projects and has been involved with The Acre Project since inception.
Head Gardener in Áras an Uachtaráin. Robbie has extensive experience in all aspects of horticulture. Having studied in the National Botanic Gardens, currently he is in charge of 130 acres of parkland and garden as well as fruit and vegetable gardens.
Director Equine Stud Farm. Ann has long and successful involvement with the equine industry in Ireland and works in the local community and spends a considerable amount of her time in fundraising activities.