Galway Company takes home gold at Event Industry Awards

Go West, The Conference & Corporate Event Management Company based in Galway have been named as the Best Professional Conference Organiser in 2019 at the Event Industry Awards. Launched in 2009, the Event Industry Awards celebrate excellence and showcase the very highest standards in Ireland’s event industry. The EIAs is the only awards programme to accolade this excellence.

The gala awards ceremony took place on Friday last, 19th July in the Citywest Hotel, Dublin was attended by hundreds of leading industry figures, and the past winners list includes a who’s who of Ireland’s event industry.

Speaking on their award win Kathleen McDonagh commented,” We are absolutely thrilled to have won this award, it is such a testament to all the work that is happening in the west of Ireland. We are always working towards promoting the west of Ireland and this truly is something we love doing and each new year we have strived to continually ensure that each event and conference exceeds expectations. Winning this award is a credit to all the team at Go West and all the external bodies, and businesses we work with”.

Established in 1995 by owner/directors Kerry O’Sullivan and Kathleen Mc Donagh, the Go West team have worked on hundreds of National and International conferences providing a full range of conference management services. Go West is a member of the Association of Irish Professional Conference Organisers (AIPCO) and is one of a limited number of Companies approved by Fáilte Ireland as a Professional Conference Organiser.

Go West employs a staff of six providing clients with conference and corporate event management solutions and support that save them resources and result in a better, more professional conference or event in Ireland.

The company continually strive to attract international business into Ireland and to showcase the country as a truly exceptional place to hold meetings and to give delegates every opportunity to experience all that Ireland has to offer in terms of heritage, culture, and the arts.

Over the past 24 years the Directors of Go West have been heavily involved in promoting Ireland as a tourist destination and a destination for International Meeting and Events.

To find out more log onto www.gowest.ie

Galway Company shortlisted for excellence at national awards

Go West heads East for the Event Industry Awards

Go West, The Conference Management Company based in Galway have been nominated for Best Professional Conference Organiser at this years Event Industry Awards. Launched in 2009, the Event Industry Awards celebrate excellence and showcase the very highest standards in Ireland’s event industry. The EIAs is the only awards programme to accolade this excellence.

The gala awards ceremony which takes place this Friday 19th July in the Citywest Hotel, Dublin will be attended by hundreds of leading industry figures, and the past winners list includes a who’s who of Ireland’s event industry.

Established in 1995 by owner/directors Kerry O’Sullivan and Kathleen Mc Donagh, the Go West team have worked on hundreds of National and International conferences providing a full range of conference management services. Go West is a member of the Association of Irish Professional Conference Organisers (AIPCO) and is one of a limited number of Companies approved by Fáilte Ireland as a Professional Conference Organiser.

Go West employs a staff of six providing clients with conference and event management solutions and support that save them resources and result in a better, more professional conference or event in Ireland.

The company continually strive to attract international business into Ireland and to showcase the country as a truly exceptional place to hold meetings and to give delegates every opportunity to experience all that Ireland has to offer in terms of heritage, culture, and the arts.

Over the past 24 years the Directors of Go West have been heavily involved in promoting Ireland as a tourist destination and a destination for International Meeting and Events.

For several years Go West has worked with the organisers of two home grown Irish conferences that are achieving status and recognition on an International scale including Food on The Edge and dotMD. Both conferences have been recognised by Failte Ireland as having the potential to grow to a scale to attract an International audience.

Looking at how to do business better and more sustainable has been a huge area of development and growth for Go West. Go West have created a Sustainable Event Checklist as the first step in their Sustainable Event Policy. The checklist is intended as a simplified tool to assist Clients. Go West are also working towards a Carbon Neutral Event, so in 2019 as dotMD expands its programme from one to two days of meetings. “We are working closely with organiser, Dr Ronan Kavanagh and Irish Doctors for the Environment to minimise the environmental impact of dotMD,” said Kerry O’Sullivan.

A key area of growth for Go West has been in the building of the Corporate Tours sector within Galway. Go West will facilitate any Corporate Tour in order to showcase just how you can either network or say Thank You to businesses stakeholders or key investors as well as staff of course. Go West can create, plan and deliver engaging events for employees and companies nationwide.

“Our in-house creative team will design a bespoke event proposal including venue, catering, decor and design, guest entertainment and more. Our team can take care of all of the event arrangements from transport, event promotion, ticketing, design and theming, event production and on-site management. Having a venue with a difference can make your event. We create events and Corporate Packages that will wow and ensure that lasting businesses relationships are forged with Galway,” said Kerry

Speaking on their nomination Kathleen McDonagh commented,”  In Go West, we manage all types of corporate events.  This shortlist and the recognition by our industry peers is a huge credit to all the hard work and planning of the Go West Team. Working to promote the west of Ireland is something we love doing and each new year we have strived to continually ensure that each event and conference exceeds expectations. This shortlist for our company is testament to that ongoing work.”

To find out more log onto www.gowest.ie

 

Caption:

Team Go West

Colette Lavin, Kerry O Sullivan, Kathleen McDonagh, Aine Beatty, Julieann Faherty. Photo Martina Regan

 

 

 

Galway Cafes caring for Cancer Care West

“Oh Cancer is it” the reality of a response when people now hear someone is sick. Cancer is affecting 1 in 2 people in Ireland now. So in times of illness, Galways Cafes Ground and Co and Mr Waffle are there catering and caring for the people in Cancer Care West.

The Galway company which operates three cafes, in Salthill, Knocknacara and Newcastle took over the catering for Cancer Care West in January 2018.

“It is a privilege and honour to look after the guests at Inis Aoibhinn (The Cancer Care West respite House), particularly during this part of the journey. Our aim is to look after each guest and make their stay at Inis Aoibhinn as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. We always make sure that we brighten their morning and evening with a smile and a warm and nutritious meal,” explained Niamh Gallagher who heads up operations at Ground and Co.

Food is a vital part of recovery and people who are in Inis Aoibhinn can avail of breakfasts (Tuesday – Friday) and evening tea (Monday – Thursday).

Breakfast involves creamy porridge oats with healthy toppings, granola and cereals, scrambled eggs, fruit pots, herbal teas, tea and coffee.

Evening Tea includes hearty and wholesome hot meals like Irish Stew, Mild Curries and Soup as well as salad options.

The always upbeat and so humble Dragos delivers fresh food daily and always has a smile for everyone…nothing is ever too much trouble.

Aisling Curran is there on a full-time basis and she looks after all the guests, like they are her family. The amount of cards saying thank you from the residents speaks volumes as to how valued she is.

Galway company making for a sustainable clean-up of World-famous festival

Walsh Waste sustainable approach to waste with Galway International Arts Festival

 Big Top recyclable cups, tonnes of cardboard and paper to be recycled with Oranmore headquartered recycling company Walsh Waste, ahead of the 42nd Galway International Arts Festival and the return of The People Build to Eyre Square, One Galway company is already thinking about the sustainable clean up.

Walsh Waste have been supplying the festival since the beginning with a single bin in 1978, this increased with the growth of the festival when they added portable toilets service and waste bins with the arrival of the Big Top to Fisheries Field. That was the beginning of their festival services which has grown over the years along with the Galway Arts festival.

Having supported the popular People Build since 2017, supplying thousands of cardboard boxes to recreate iconic Galway landscapes. The build sees everyone out building together. Last year Walsh Waste supplied about 4 tonnes of cardboard across two builds, and 100% of this cardboard was recycled.

They are back this year to look at how the festival recovers or recycles the waste generated at the festival. This Years Big Top along with Heineken will be using a fully recyclable cup which is a first.

“We are a long-time festival recycling partner and are committed to ensuring all waste is recovered or recycled. Walsh Waste moved away from using landfill as an outlet for mixed general waste / residual waste in 2011,” explained Managing Director of Walsh Waste, Gerard Walsh.

Now in 2019 Walsh Waste will again support the People Build, after It won the hearts of Festival audiences in 2016 & 2017, French artist, Olivier Grossetête, returns to Galway International Arts Festival with The People Build, a spectacular architectural event that has captured the imagination the world over. Encouraging a sense of community whereby the public can get involved, The People Build will see hundreds of volunteers creating a large-scale and highly ambitious structure solely from cardboard. It will take place from July 19-21 and is entirely free.

This year Grossetête and his team, together with hundreds of volunteers, will help transform cardboard boxes that will replicate an iconic Galway building and will be erected on Eyre Square.

This structure will be assembled on Friday July 19 and Saturday July 20 and as per last year, they will be demolished the day after on Sunday July 21.

“The thousands of cardboard boxes following the demolitions, everyone will be delighted to hear that 100% of the cardboard is recycled. It is our vision to continue providing our customers with the most sustainable recycling options, and in doing so change the way they think about their own recycling practices. We will achieve this through utilising only the most environmentally sound sources of disposal in the market. We are committed to achieving business success while leaving a positive imprint on society,” said Gerard.

It is estimated that almost 2 tonnes of cardboard will be used across the build. Once the structure has been demolished, Walsh Waste & Recycling will be on hand to take away the crushed cardboard to be recycled.

The 42nd Galway International Arts Festival is Ireland’s leading international arts Festival and runs from 15-28 July 2019.  See more at www.giaf.ie or at https://www.walshwaste.com/.

bike week galway

People take to the two wheels for a food exploration around Galway

Food, Music and cycling combine for National Bike week

Galway’s westend along with Galway urban greenway alliance and Galway City Council hosted a cycle buffet to celebrate the food and cycling cultures of Galway for National Bike Week. To kick off the national festival in Galway, The Bike Buffet happened on Saturday 22nd June from 3pm.

Starting at 3pm from Ravens Terrace and finishing in Fr Burke Park at 6pm, the 2019 Bike Buffet explored Galway on two wheels. Led by the Galway Urban Greenway Alliance in conjunction with Galway City Council, participants enjoyed cycling safely around Galway and got the chance to eat with some of the westend’s favourite restaurants.

Working with eateries in Galway westend and FoodSpace Ireland, there were three courses served with a starter at the award-winning FoodSpace on the NUIG campus (All veg, fruits and herbs supplied by Presentation Primary School Garden), then a cycle to a secret location for an alfresco main course from Botown Craft Beers and Burgers. The cycle continued through Galway and finished at Fr Burke Park with a dessert by The Works Galway at Massimo. Sculptor Donnacha Cahill was on hand with a piece of his works at Fr Burke Park which also be doubling up to play some serious Tunes.

All information is on Galway’s westend social channels.

gaelforce lookwest

Gaelforce West: Challenge at its Best

Competitors from all over Ireland answered the call and joined one of Ireland’s most Iconic Adventure Races.

Gaelforce West has led the way for adventure racing in Ireland since it started in 2006. This 68km race, took place on the 22nd of June and saw competitors run cycle and kayak from Connemara to Westport.

Starting on Glassilaun beach in Connemara at dawn and finishing in Westport town centre, taking in scenic parts of the Wild Atlantic Way. Along the stunning linear route, competitors kayaked across Killary Fjord, cycled through the Delphi valley and climbed Croagh Patrick.

The 68km route saw Shane Scully take first place in the male with a time of 3:23:32 and Laura O’Driscoll being the fasted woman on the route with 4:15:49.

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Bridget Gavin from Killary Gaelforce said “this race remains one of the most iconic adventure races in Ireland. It represents challenge, achievement and drive. For many adventure racers Gaelforce West is the ultimate badge of honour and the event brings people back year after year. It is a personal journey with some of the most dramatic scenery Ireland has to offer.”

This year 7 more people celebrated their 10th year at Gaelforce West, joining a circle of Gaelforce West legends from 2018. They received a specially designed Pro T-Shirt to mark this huge achievement.

Gaelforce West is the third event in the Gaelforce Adventure Series and some competitors have completed their tri-medal circle at this event. Others are holding out for the victory at Gaelforce North, on September 21st, where the winner of the annual series will be crowned.

gaelforce westGaelforce West is proudly supported by John West who will offer a variety of protein options to refuel after the race. “We are delighted to be sponsoring Gaelforce for the 4th year in a row as part of our campaign to fuel an active healthy lifestyle with our natural protein products. The event today was a pleasure to be at, as we met so many inspiring participants, many taking part for the 1st time, and their supporting families. We look forward to our next Gaelforce event in Kippure in August” said Anne-Claire Monde from John West.

In 2019 Gaelforce has teamed up with Jigsaw, the National Centre for Youth Mental Health as their charity partner. As part of the partnership participants can donate when registering for the event or become an Everyday Jigsaw Hero and raise vital funds for the charity.

More details at https://gaelforceevents.com/en/gaelforce-west-gaelforce-west

Conamara hill-village Cnoc Suain launches Kickstarter campaign

How a restored Conamara hill-village is increasing awareness and appreciation for culture, nature and biodiversity through innovation and creativity.

Cnoc Suain, a Cultural Retreat located in the Connemara Gaeltacht, is a sustainably restored hill village celebrating the culture and creativity of a people and place.

Founded twenty-four years ago by Dearbhaill Standún and Charlie Troy, it has achieved global recognition for providing a unique cultural experience for visitors to the Connemara area. Now together with their daughters, Dearbhaill and Charlie are about to further develop the project and establish a nature-inspired Creative Hub – an atmospheric, multidisciplinary space where nature and creativity can flourish.

This creative hub – to include a performance space/gallery/cafe and innovative nature-based learning technologies – will open up many new opportunities and possibilities for Cnoc Suain and Galway’s cultural landscape, while continuing to promote environmental awareness and sustainable tourism on its 200 acres of natural wilderness.

Cnoc Suain has won numerous national and international awards for innovative cultural experiences, sustainable restoration and environmental stewardship.

These awards include Best Cultural Experience at the Irish Tourism Industry Awards; The Guardian “World Ethical Travel Award; Travel & Leisure “Global Vision Award”; WRTA “World Responsible Tourism Award, Society of American Travel Writers “Phoenix Award; and Connemara Heritage Award.

Cnoc Suain Kickstarter Campaign

The founders of Cnoc Suain, teacher and musician, Dearbhaill and her husband Charlie, a natural scientist and teacher, were inspired to create this unique culture and nature retreat – their all-consuming life project – by their combined passion for Irish heritage, nature, creativity and experiential learning.

To fund the next phase of Cnoc Suain’s development and evolve further its vision for the future, a global crowdfunding campaign is being launched on the crowdfunding website Kickstarter, running until June 26th.

See the Cnoc Suain Kickstarter Campaign

Irish company launches 4 day working week

ICE Group recognising evolving employee needs

When Forbes asked the question in March this year, is it time for a 4-day working week?  The world took notice and one Galway company took action.

Recognising the value of adopting more flexible ways of working to motivate, encourage and retain staff, ICE Group in Galway are now switching their business to a 4-day working week model. The award-winning Recruitment, Training and Outsourced HR and Payroll Business partner to many successful Irish and Multi-national organisations. With over 50 employees and an international client base of clients has identified the importance in the change of working environment when it comes to the traditional workspace.

The 4 Day Week (Project 475100) is an initiative that gives back to their extremely hard-working staff.

“Adapting the workplace to the employees needs will empower your workforce and we know will improve productivity and output.  We know that a happier and valued workforce will result in a positive working environment and company growth,” explained Margaret Cox Director of ICE Group.

“Working effectively now means working less and having a 3-day weekend enables people to have quality time outside of their job to do the things they want with the people they love. We value our employees and want to ensure that their quality of life both inside and out of work is as good as it can be.”

With offices in Galway, Dublin, Limerick, Sligo and Sydney, ICE Group serve a wide range of companies, including indigenous businesses, public services, Irish subsidiaries of multinationals and overseas organisations.

“How we do business is changing, this can only be viewed as a positive.  ICE Group adaptability for change is what we have built our company on since 1972.  We are growing a dynamic and vibrant multi-service company.  We view change as an opportunity for our further development.  Our commitment is a never-ending quest for perfection, providing even greater value and service to our customers and greater prosperity for each of us.  The adaption of a 4-day working week is yet another way in which we can grow and evolve our business to work for our employees and our clients.”

Research has shown that changing the work week so that staff have a 3-day week end, creates a more focused and energised staff.  ICE Group are convinced that this will have a benefit for their customers. With a team slogan for this project; ‘4-day work, 100% customer, the buy in is 100%.

Felim McDonnell, CEO of ICE Group explains why ICE Group is switching to a 4 day week. “The business we are in changes people’s lives. We give our customers opportunities to change their lives, now we have found a way to change our employee’s lives.

In terms of our Clients, the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive.  They get that the service they receive from our team will enhance their own service requirements and consequently their profitability. One or two have joked about when they could join us.

From our employees point of view, the opportunity of a 3 day week-end and a four day working week, on the same pay, has generated many ideas for the extra day – “will I take up a new course, restart a hobby, learn to fly, bake more for my family?”.  We have also seen an increase in people applying for work with us as they are really motivated by this innovative initiative.”

Jillian, who is based in the Limerick office commented “I didn’t believe what I was hearing when Felim made the announcement – this means I can really enjoy my job and spend more time at home with my family and little girl.  Everyone is really delighted and very excited about all the possibilities to really manage our Work / Life / Family Balance.  It’s just amazing. We will have that Bank holiday buzz every week end and return to work energised and refreshed.”

For more information on ICE Group and the 4 day work week log onto www.4dayweek.ie or call 091-546700.

 

gaelforce west

Experience the Wild Atlantic Way: Run | Kayak | Cycle

Over 800 competitors expected to Connemara and Westport for one of Irelands most Iconic Adventure Races. Gaelforce West in partnership with John West has led the way for adventure racing in Ireland since it started in 2006.  This 66km race, taking place on the 22nd of June, starts on Glassilaun beach in Connemara at dawn and finishes in Westport town centre, taking in scenic parts of the Wild Atlantic Way. Along the stunning linear route competitors kayak across Killary Fjord, cycle through the Delphi valley and climb Croagh Patrick.

Bridget Gavin from Killary Gaelforce said “this race remains one of the most iconic adventure races in Ireland. It represents challenge, achievement and drive. For many adventure racers Gaelforce West is the ultimate badge of honour and the event brings people back year after year. It is a personal journey with some of the most dramatic scenery Ireland has to offer.”

gaelforce westIt is the third event in the Gaelforce Adventure Series and some competitors will complete their tri-medal circle at this event. Others are holding out for the victory at Gaelforce North, on September 21st, where the winner of the annual series will be crowned.

For any spectators the Killary Fjord is a good vantage point as the transition from run to kayaks takes place here. Additionally, in close proximity is the newly open 2km looped Killary Coastal Park which leads people straight to the edge of the Fjord. The Misunderstood Heron, voted in the Top 10 of the world’s coolest food trucks by Lonely Planet, will be open on-site too.

Gaelforce West is proudly supported by John West who will offer a variety of protein options to refuel after the race.

In 2019 Gaelforce has teamed up with Jigsaw, the National Centre for Youth Mental health as their charity partner. As part of the partnership participants can donate when registering for the event or become an Everyday Jigsaw Hero and raise vital funds for the charity.

More details at https://gaelforceevents.com/en/gaelforce-west-gaelforce-west

wrap fund galway

Film projects granted investment to generate more than €4m spend across the West of Ireland

A €2m regional fund set up to encourage the film, television drama, animation and gaming sectors in the West of Ireland is today announcing the projects which have received offers of support since it was announced at the end of 2017.

The Western Region Audiovisual Producer’s Fund — or WRAP Fund — is a unique initiative of the Western Development Commission (WDC) and the Galway Film Centre and was set up to stimulate the industry in the western region.

Its aim is to support local talent and increase the economic impact of the industry in the region. Run in association with the local authorities of Clare, Donegal, Galway City, Galway County, Mayo, Roscommon and Sligo as well as Údarás na Gaeltachta, WRAP will ensure investment in the sector until 2020.

The WRAP Fund is also the only funding project in the Republic of Ireland which is open to the games sector. The deadline for applications for funding in the games sector was March 8, 2019 and an announcement of the games funded will follow once they are selected.

As part of its production investment, WRAP has supported five projects to date including three feature films, one animated feature and one documentary which will undertake production across the West, creating opportunities for local talent.

It is anticipated that the projects backed by WRAP funding so far will generate in excess of €4m spend in the region generating a significant return of investment of 8:1.

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Behind the scenes on ‘The Winter Lake’

The newly-announced projects are:

  • Death of A Ladies Man, by Cohen Productions DAC/Port Pictures, which will start shooting across Galway in late May
  • Ooops! Back In The Deep End, an animated feature by Moetion Films which is in production in Galway City
  • Screamers, a documentary by Dot Television and Marcie Films, which is in pre-production and will be shot across Donegal and Sligo.
  • The Winter Lake, by Winter Lake Productions/Tailored Films, which has just completed production in Sligo.

These projects are in addition to the previously-announced Calm With Horses, which was shot in Clare and across Galway city and county and is currently in post-production.

In addition to its production investment, WRAP is announcing the recipients of the first round of development investment to assist local producers to develop projects that can undertake production within the region. This was as a result of a call out with a deadline of October 2018. Companies based in Clare, Donegal, Galway and Mayo have received support. These are:

  • To Hell Or Hibernia: a feature film developed by Mayo production company Hardy Films and written by Mike Cockayne (Mayo) and Vincent Cleghorne
  • Trace: a feature film developed by Galway production company Magamedia and written by Ray Lawlor (Mayo)
  • St. John: a television series developed by Galway production company Danú Media and Dearg Films and written by Brian Reddin
  • Weekend: a television series developed by Donegal production company Slipway Films and New Decade TV and written by Tara Hegarty (Donegal)
  • The Wee Littles: an animated television series developed by Clare animation studio Magpie6 Media, created by Cliff Parrott (Clare) and Christina O’Shea (Clare) and written/directed by Emma Hogan (Clare)

Sarah Dillon, Development Manager of the WRAP Fund, said:

“We are delighted to be announcing the projects in receipt of investment and it is exciting to see the caliber of applications we are receiving. This is reflective of the general standard over the last few years in Irish film, television and animation with Irish talent making its mark on a global stage at the world’s leading film festivals. WRAP is delighted to give a platform to local talent telling stories. WRAP is focused on continuing to drive the success and growth of the screen industries in the West through targeted strategic support with the backing of our stakeholders.”

Tomás Ó Síocháin, CEO of Western Development Commission, said:

Developing the audio visual sector as part of the Creative Economy is a key goal of the recently published 5 year strategy for the WDC. As the lead agency for the Creative Economy under the Government’s West Regional Enterprise Plan, we already see the benefits a dedicated fund such as the WRAP fund can bring to a region: high-caliber projects adding €4m extra spend to the local economy together with invaluable training and experience for local talent interested in working in this industry.”

Alan Duggan, Manager of Galway Film Centre, said:

“The WRAP Fund is a game-changing initiative for the region in terms of the opportunities it provides to talent across film, TV, animation and games. It also represents a unique collaboration between the eight local authorities, Galway Film Centre and the WDC, each with the foresight to support the Audiovisual Sector at a time of unprecedented opportunity for the region.”

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