Wexford County Council Headquarters, County Hall Wexford was the venue for a unique gathering on Tuesday last 22 May when Wexford County Council Arts Officer Liz Burns, accompanied by Wexford County Council Age Friendly Co-ordinator Ann Marie Laffan held a public meeting to launch the ‘Cultural Companions’ Programme in Wexford.
An estimated 80 members of the public attended the meeting which was held to explain this exciting new initiative, jointly run by the Arts Department and the Community Section in Wexford County Council. Cultural Companions is aimed at people aged 50 and over who are interested in attending Arts and Cultural events but may like attend with a companion. The purpose of Cultural Companions is to provide them with access to a network of like-minded people who attend events together as a group.
Speaking at the event Ann Marie Laffan explained that “The aim is to provide increased opportunities for older people to engage with Wexford’s vibrant arts and cultural scene. People who sign up will receive a quarterly calendar of events from Wexford County Council and they can choose which of these events they want to attend and book and pay for these independently”.
Arts Officer Liz Burns went on to explain how it works. “Members meet up at an allocated time prior to each event before attending the event itself. The event is usually followed by a social get-together which is often the highlight of the occasion. Membership is free and people are very much encouraged to come along on their own or with friends. A “meet and greet” person will be there at each event to welcome all members and to introduce each attendee to each other.
Cultural Companions is a nationwide programme and volunteers from Dublin’s Cultural Companions group were invited to County Hall to share their experiences and answer questions about the initiative. Musical entertainment on the afternoon was provided by Mr. Jimmy Hogan, with all attendees describing the event as a welcome and comfortable opportunity to make new friends and meet like-minded people.
Anyone interested in signing up to Cultural Companions can contact Wexford County Council staff member Ms. Lisa Fortune on 053 9196369 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information