Kildare’s People of the Year candidates chosen

Liam Murphy, Lorna Douglas, Colm O'Brien. Front: Carmel Kane,Mary Reidy, Tina Reidy. Pic Dessie Boland.
Nominees for the REHAB People of the Year awards have been announced with a diverse number of group and individuals representing organisations and charities contributing to community life across Co. Kildare.

Nominees for the REHAB People of the Year awards have been announced with a diverse number of group and individuals representing organisations and charities contributing to community life across Co. Kildare.

This is the 25th anniversary of the awards event and Matt Browne, the event coordinator, was the first winner in 1989 for his work with the Irish Wheelchair Association.

“This year we received more nominations than ever and as always it’s very difficult to separate the select the final award winners. Because it’s a special anniversary we decided to run with 11 awards rather than ten and one international award winner,” he added.

The international award goes to the STAR Apple Leyte Fund, founded by Kilcock man Pascal Canning in 2006 after witnessing the impact of a landslide in Southern Leyte, Phillipines in 2006. To date STAR Apple has constructed 100 homes there.

Now a fundraiser with REHAB, who organise the awards, Mr. Browne said the overall award winners will be announced a gala banquet in the Hotel Keadeen on November 1.

Two further groups will are recognised this year - the Breast Cancer Group in Robertstown, who’ve raised €100,000 in ten years and Newbridge Share Foods, which distributes 80-100 food hampers weekly.

Other award winners include Willie Reidy from Kilmeague. Pat Corcoran, Naas and Shauna Switzer, Nurney.

Among the community award winners are Sally Purcell of Kildare, Dave Maher of the Bellyard pub in Monasterevin; Ann Marie Kelly, Castlewarden; Tracey Long, Naas and Rosemarie Healy, Celbridge.

The event is sponsored by Kildare County Council and local businesses.