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News Archive for ‘Finalists 2012’

A note to 2012 Award Winners

Posted by on November 12, 2012

A note to 2012 Award Winners

A short message to the new Award Winners from Michael Kelly of GIY Ireland, 2011 Impact Award Winner. 

It was very strange being at the awards on Oct 18th and being there as an alumni, rather than an awardee! At the same time, it was nice to be there and not to have a sick feeling in the stomach as I did the previous year! A huge congrats to all the awardees – all of your projects are simply awe-inspiring. Congrats also to the SEI team on pulling off another incredibly inspiring event – as is always the case with SEI gigs, I returned to the GIY trenches feeling reinvigorated and re-inspired.

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A bit like learning to dance? Collaborative working & Fumbally Exchange

Posted by on October 8, 2012

A bit like learning to dance? Collaborative working & Fumbally ExchangeGeorge Boyle. Architect and founder of fumbally Exchange, at the official launch of fumbally Exchange, a not-for-profit design and innovation in Dublin 8. Founded a year ago, it is now home to more than 40 small buinesses. Photograph: Stephen Kilkenny

Following on with our blogs from the 2012 Finalists, we meet George Boyle of Fumbally Exchange.

A bit like Learning to Dance?

I used to be afraid of dancing. I soon got over it.

I didn’t believe it could be true – a place where you were free to unleash your inner wilds without rebuke. It took such excruciating time and effort to learn “the codes”, so this public invitation to exhibitionism and indulgence was – an incredible nonsense.

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Neuro Hero: From a wish to a reality

Posted by on September 20, 2012

Neuro Hero: From a wish to a realityAviva and Steve Cohen and Family

As we continue our weekly blogs to introduce the eight finalists, allow us to introduce you to Aviva Cohen, founder of Neuro Hero.

My name is Aviva Cohen. I’ve been a researcher, lecturer and communications consultant for more than 20 years. I’ve spent even longer practising and teaching karate. I fell in love with Steve, my karate master, many years ago and we have two little girls, aged 12 and 7.

In 2006, Steve had a massive stroke. Since then, I have dedicated myself to finding ways to improve his quality of life and the lives of people with similar challenges.

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Lucy Masterson – Hireland

Posted by on September 4, 2012

Lucy Masterson – HirelandHireland Advertising

Continuing our blogs to profile the eight Finalists…this week let’s introduce Lucy Masterson of Hireland. Take it away Lucy…

Rebels with a Cause

Before we launched somebody offered some ‘constructive feedback’ on our big idea: Hireland was a rebellious approach to the jobs crisis that was hopelessly idealistic and would never see the light of day. Another organisation’s response to the notion that we might kick start economic recovery through challenging business owners to think differently about the benefits of hiring over firing was considered utterly naïve , we had no real understanding of the issues businesses are facing, there were far too many larger forces at play – in a nut shell Hireland was a nice idea but it would never take off. Did this bother us, of course. Did it stop our plans for Hireland? Absolutely not.

9 months on and I sit in reflection. How misinformed that feedback would prove to be. Hireland’s “idealistic” vision of tapping in to the collective entrepreneurialism, can do attitude and deep rooted desire that people have to be part of the solution has already inspired thousands to pledge to ‘Hire One’ in spite of the challenging economic climate they face.

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Posted by on August 8, 2012

SoarSoar want every young person to reveal and experience their greatness within.

Over the next few weeks we’ll be giving each of the 2012 Finalists the opportunity to introduce themselves to you. The eight Finalists are taking part in a three month evaluation and support programme. In October we’ll be announcing the three social entrepreneurs who make it onto the Impact Programme (support and funding worth €200,000) and the five who will make it on to the Elevator Programme (support and funding worth €35,000). Today we hear from Karl Swan, who together with Tony Griffin has founded The Soar Foundation. Take it away Karl.


Soar began when Tony Griffin and I watched a documentary called Every Heart Beats True. This doco told the story of the Irishman Jim Stynes as he battled cancer and also profiled his work with the youth organisation Reach in Melbourne, Australia. Soon afterwards Tony and I met, agreed that we had to act on shared concerns for our young people. How were they to dare to dream in the eye of the pervasive negativity that swirled all round them as a result of the financial recession?
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