Sunbeam lobby the Government

In an initiative prompted by Bray partnership, Sunbeam House Services have joined forces with other community groups to lobby local politicians for the swift passing into law of the Mental Capacity bill.

The bill was introduced to the Oireachtas in September 2008 and two years later has still not been passed. Mental capacity legislation is imperative to secure the rights of vulnerable people.

East Coast Radio featuring Sunbeam

Here is a ten minute audio clip of some of the guys on the radio discussing the Disability Awareness project. Aired in August 2010. Well worth a listen.

Woof Woof

The ‘Name John Hannigans Dog’ competition is over and I can confirm that his name is Dixie.

Not an easy one to guess by any means. Nevertheless, it was in a good cause and nearly €110 were raised for Childline.

Summer Break

A gang from the Training Service in Bray went to Galway on holiday for 4 days and stayed in Galway Rasstena Blue and Spa Hotel earlier this Summer.

Louisa remembers – “We went to the town and we went shopping we went to night club called ‘Cuba’. We had Lunch out to the Court House Hotel on the 2nd Day. We had an Italian dinner out one night down the town the 2nd night and went to the hot tub and the cussede and the swimming pool and I shared a room with some of my friends.”

Competition: Name John Hannigans Dog!

Exactly what it says on the tin…
It’s one Euro per guess and in aid of Childline. It is a male dog. Forms and donation box at reception, Killarney Road. Special prize for the winner.
My money’s on it being ‘ the-puppy-formerly-known-as-Prince’.

Alex Picasso

Alexandra is a fantastic artist in our midst. Her paintings are hanging in many of our units and have a very unique and colourful style to them. She uses mostly a special type of felt marker for the majority of her work. She spends a lot of time painting both at home and elsewhere. If you would like an Alexandra original hanging on your wall contact Eolas for further details.

Sponsored Walk in Aid of the People of Pakistan

Fiona O’Farrell and the staff and service-users in the Training Service, Bray heard about the plight of the people of Pakistan in the wake of the recent flooding and decided to do something to help. They organised a sponsored, 2km walk in a local park to raise money to donate to a charity that is helping in Pakistan.
Many thanks are owed to the friends and families who donated money as over €2000 were raised! No mean feat.
The fastest walkers were Pierce and Dan who came in joint first. Also, there was a small prize for Ian who collected the most money and Deirdre who collected the most donations.

Sunbeam Arts and Crafts Shop Ends its Lease

The Arts and Crafts shop closed its doors last Friday. Situated just off Main St., Bray in the Mamma Mia cafe complex, they provided a wide range of merchandise from hand-made bags to glass-work to small trinkets such as key-rings and the like. The quality of the products is what impresses when you first enter the shop. All-in-all, it was a great community-based project and we hope to see the like again in the near future. Many thanks to those involved for donating their time and effort.

In Dogs We Trust

On Friday 20th the Garden Team were lucky enough to visit the Dogs Trust complex in Finglas, a centre dedicated to finding new homes for stray and unwanted dogs. Despite only opening last November the centre has already found loving homes for over 800 dogs. The new owners are carefully checked and their homes visited to make sure the dogs only get the most suitable homes possible. All dogs are welcomed to the centre, be they young or old, sick or healthy, and importantly there is no time limit to how long a dog can stay at the centre.

We got to see many of the over 150 dogs currently onsite (including 20 puppies). We visited the state of the art veterinary clinic, living areas and walking pens (where the dogs really come to life). It was clear that each dogs welfare was the most important thing to everyone involved. We are extremely grateful to Jillian, our very enthusiastic and helpful guide. If you visit be sure to leave a donation as they rely entirely on public generosity to survive.

Childline BBQ goes down a storm

The Networking Childline BBQ was held in the Garden Team canteen on Thursday last, 19th August. Estimates of attendance vary wildly from 40 to over 200 people. A huge attendance despite the monsoon rain which fell. Fortunately wet hair and soggy burger buns weren’t enough to put off the many party goers. Thanks to all those who helped to make it a success and raised over €345!

The “Guess the Name of John Hannigan’s Dog” Competition is still ongoing so if you think you can successfully name his dog, (picture of said dog coming soon) then put your money where your mouth is in aid of Childline. One euro per guess.

A KING Meets His Angels. Poem by Stephen Browne, ATEC

The King has gone to meet his Angel,
His sweet voice will be heard no more,
The Angels have called him to them,
The Dancer has lost his big dance floor,
He has gone to the big dance floor in the sky,
He has said his sad farewell, his long tearful bye bye,
His Billy Jean is all-alone ,
His Beat It can do no more,
His Thriller Has lost its Buzz,
His Black or White has lost his shine,
His boogie has lost his shoes,
His sweet kids have lost their dad,
His loving mother has lost her son,
His grieving father has lost the one,
His grieving fans have lost their king,
His family have lost there loved one,
When he was young he had the talent,
He had it when others hadn’t,
He had the hits they had the misses,
He became the best and he blew away the rest,
The girl became his with his sweet sounding voice,
When he started he was the main attraction,
He was in a five boys band but it was his voice that held them together,
Later in life he went out on his own,
He carved his own style in his own dance,
And his own trend,
He bowed out when it got tough,
He could not handle the rough,
When it began to see the strain,
The fans lost their idol it came to a sad and lonely end,
The media lost a story,
A major headliner,
Long live the king,
By Stephen Browne.

A Visit to Glendalough for a Bat Walk

A group of us from The Garden Team went on a tour organised by Glendalough Education Centre to take a look at the bats. It was held on Thursday 12th August and we were intrigued to discover that the little lodge house near the lake is home to over 396 bats in its attic.

At around 9.10pm they all flew out from a vent in the roof ridge one by one. These bats are known as the soprano pipistrelle bat which is as tiny as your little thumb. They flew out as fast as a sports car, flying along and swooping in the sky. We were told that it is a myth that bats can become tangled in your hair. Robert joked that it was like count Dracula in the trees.

We then walked into the forest and kept stopping with our guide who had a high frequency batometer sonar system which can read the bats echo-location sounds. When he turned this special radiometer on we could hear a constant clicking noise which was the bat making this noise to locate its insects that it was hunting. We also walked down to the river to listen out for the water bat and the long eared whisper bat. They like to swish and sway down into the river to catch the moths and insects that are attracted to the water.

After an interesting evening we headed back to Glendalough hostel to rest our weary heads after a fun bat filled event.

Nationwide – RTE

Some of the guys from Sunbeam will feature in an episode of Nationwide on RTE at 7pm this Friday, 13th August. The programme is in relation to supported employment. Should be a good show, make sure to check it out.

Volunteering at the Dun Laoghaire Festival of World Cultures

My name is Louisa. I first got in touch with the Wicklow Volunteering Bureau through Connect Employment. I had decided I would like to do voluntary work. I have a part-time job in a restaurant but I found I still had a lot of free time so I decided to volunteer and do something good with it.
Two weeks ago I volunteered at the Dun Laoghaire Festival of World Cultures. I was looking after the maze in the games area and I also handed out the timetables and brochures to the public. At the same time we had to keep an eye that things ran smoothly. It was a good day.
On the Sunday evening all the volunteers and co-ordinators went to the Kingston for a drink together to wind down from the hard work. On the Wednesday after that there was a party for the volunteers in the Purty Kitchen. It was a good evening.
Everything went well on the festival weekend. I will probably do it again next year. I am glad that I did it.

Artists message

My name is Lekha Bhaskaran. I am from India. I am living in Ireland since March 2006. I am a service-user in Bray. I like to make jewellery. I sell my jewellery in Sunbeam’s art and craft shop. The shop is called “Mo Lamha”. I work in the shop every Friday. I really enjoy it.

New Aviva Stadium

Last week the brand new stadium at Landsdowne Road was host to it’s first football match. The contenders were a mix of Irelands best homegrown players against none other than Manchester Utd. The Mancunians won with an impressive 7-1 victory, christening the new stadium in style.

A few of the members of the Garden Team got tickets for the night. This photo was taken by Michael Kirwan on his Iphone.