An event aimed at those considering relocating to work abroad in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Dubai and the UK will be held on 21-22 March in the RDS in Dublin and 26-27 March in the Silver Springs Moran Hotel.
Organisers say the Working Abroad Expo will include immigration officials from Australia, New Zealand and Canada giving visa advice, relocation services, employers and recruitment consultants, and financial advisers. Information on volunteering abroad will also be available.
The publication of the oral histories of emigrants is a great little trend of late, with many community publications achieving prominence in their localities. “A Story To Be Told”, the stories of emigrants to Toronto in Canada, looks likely to bring the genre to new prominence.
The book collects the stories of 130 emigrants who arrived from 1940 to 1999. The stories were collected by Eleanor McGrath and William Smith, who have both worked in the Toronto Irish community for many years. Ms McGrath is the former Executive Director of the Ireland Fund of Canada. Mr Smith is a professional photographer who reports for the Toronto Irish News, among other outlets.
The project will be launched this autumn at several events in Dublin, Belfast and Canada. The book is published by Liffey Press in Dublin and distributed in the US by Dufour Editions.
Ottawa’s Irish Drop-In Group has created a wonderful miscellany called “Memories of the Past: Stories and Recipes from Ottowa’s Irish Drop-In Group”. The eclectic collection of reminiscences, poems, jokes, photographs and more is a splendid insight into the lives of the 40+ seniors in the drop-in group, which meets every week at Margaret Mary’s Church in the south end of the Canadian capital.
Some of the contributions focus on individual stories of emigration and Irish and Canadian life, while others focus on the Irish history and heritage of the Ottawa area. Irish immigration to the area began in the early years of the 19th century, with sponsored immigration schemes; judging by this book, the Irish heritage of the area is rich and deep.
The book also contains about 60 recipes, including such traditional favourites as barm brack, colcannon, champ, porter cake, beef stew, and many soda bread recipes. A treat!
For more information, visit the website for the Irish Society of the National Capital Region.
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The Department of Social and Family Affairs is contacting 8,000 pensioners abroad to ensure they are still alive, the Irish Times reports today.
There are 35,000 people living outside of Ireland who receive the contributory pension, according to the paper; the contributory pension is made to eligible people 66 or over who have paid social insurance PSRI contributions. The pension amounts to €223 per week, with more if the recipient has an adult dependent.
There are a total of 237,000 recipients of this pension, with 14% of them living abroad. Most of those recipients abroad live in the UK, the US, and Canada. As these countries do not automatically alert Irish authorities when an Irish citizen dies, the Department is concerned that welfare payments may be made to people who have died. Officials are contacting 8,000 recipients they feel may have passed away or who no longer have an adult dependent.
One thousand circulars were distributed last month, for the first phase of the “life certification project”. If there is no response within a period of time, the payments will be stopped; they will be reinstated, however, if someone is taken off the list but is still alive.
A new research network will examine the migration of Ulster-Scots, Scots and Irish to Canada and the US. The Atlantic Arc has been founded by a group of academics, including several from the University of Ulster, who visited recently as part of a cross-border delegation to New Brunswick aimed at developing academic, cultural and economic co-operation across the Atlantic.
The Atlantic Arc will facilitate research cooperation and the use of archives among institutes in Canada, the US, and Europe.