Leitrim GAA rolled out their new Inclusion & Integreation initiative at a special launch in the Bush Hotel on Monday, May 28.
Former Chairman Gerry McGovern has been appointed by the County Board as the Inclusion & Integration officer while National Inclusion & Integreation Chairman Brian Armitage and Officer Tony Waten were present at the launch along with the co-ordinators for Connacht, Munster and North Leinster and the officers for Galway and Roscommon.
Tony Watene outlined the importance of Inclusion and Integration and that both inclusion and integration are now accepted as an integral part of the National policy of Camogie, Ladies GAA, Handball and Rounders, adding that a set of accountable actions have been agreed at all levels of the association.
Tony stated that the GAA and inclusion were inextricably linked given the position the GAA holds at the heart of Irish society and that we all have an obligation to promote opportunities and to provide avenues and meaningful outcomes for all to be involved in Gaelic games, adding that he means people who are new in our communities, people with disabilities, minority groups, etc.
Outlines of the progress made at local, regional and national level were given as Denis O’Boyle stating that the process is just starting in Connacht and meeting such as the one held in Leitrim would be the starting point for all counties in the province.
Thomas Keenan give a presentation of what has been achieved in Leitrim and outlined the areas within Leitrim’s strategic plan have been addressed.
Non-Irish born Leitrim hurler Zac Moradi was also present and was highly complimented on his performances with the county hurlers, highlighting that the fact that Leitrim GAA are already involved in the process of Inclusion and Integration.
Leitrim officer Gerry McGovern outlined the area’s that this new committee will addressing in the immediate future and he urged all GAA clubs to be as open and welcoming as possible in involving everybody from our communities in the various aspects of the running of our GAA clubs. He stressed the importance of asking, inviting and welcoming new people into our clubs particularly at this time when clubs are losing people to emigration.
A committee representative of the various stakeholders is now being set up to progress this iniative in the County.