Friday, May 26, 2017

Talk on study skills for dyslexic children

A talk on developing study skills for older children and teens with dyslexia will be given at Kildare Community Library on Thursday next, writes Brian Byrne.

Beginning at 7pm, it will be given by occupational therapist Dr Dorothy Armstrong and is aimed at parents, students with dyslexia, teachers and those who work with this group.

This talk will help students learn how to prepare for exams and will cover issues such as understanding how dyslexia can impact studying, preparing to study, using your own learning style, how to read to understand, how to take notes, and memory strategies.

It is one of a series of talks and workshops organised by Kildare Library Service. Attendance is free, but should be booked by contacting the relevant library in advance.

Dr Armstrong has a wide range of expertise in working with children, teenagers and young adults.

Attendance at all of the events is free of charge and open to everyone but advance booking is required. Please contact the library where the talk is happening to book your place.

A brochure outlining the full programme of talks and workshops for 2017 is available from your local library. For further information please check out

'We need to talk ...'

Adult children and their parents need to have conversations about ageing issues before a critical illness makes them necessary, writes Brian Byrne.

That’s the view of Home Instead Senior Care’s Amanda Bohan, commenting on survey results that show such conversations simply aren’t happening enough.

The owner of Home Instead’s Kildare franchise, based in Kilcullen, notes that from the survey, half of such adult children have waited until a health crisis before discussing with their parents such matters as living choices, driving, health and end of life.

Home Instead has developed a ’40-70 Rule’ and programme with resources such as videos, conversation starters and ageing plans, to help jump-start that dialogue when children are approaching their 40s and, or, their parents are approaching their 70s.

“Too often, conversations about important senior care issues are taking place in a hospital, after a health emergency has occurred,” Amanda says. “We’re hoping to change that.”

The most difficult conversation for families to discuss is around living choices. Two-thirds of adult children surveyed and four in ten of senior parents say it is most difficult to discuss the parent’s need to move away from the home in the event of a change in physical or mental health.

More information from

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Phone found, is it yours?

UPDATE: Owner has been in contact.

A Samsung phone has been found in Kilcullen.

It's locked, so the finder can't contact the owner.

If you think it is yours, call 087 4349067.

(Phone shown is for illustration only, not necessarily the actual model.)

Garda warning on burglaries

Kilcullen gardai have asked local people to be vigilant about suspicious behaviour, writes Brian Byrne.

This follows an increase recently in burglaries in the Naas Garda District.

The Garda have issued the request through the Kilcullen Text Alert system.

KCCEC is hiring

Staff numbers at the Kilcullen Community Childcare & Education Centre are being expanded and the Centre is advertising for two positions under the Community Employment Scheme.

The positions are Assistant Childcare Support Worker, and Cook.

As all training and support will be provided, this will be an excellent opportunity to gain valuable qualifications and experience while earning.

Applicants must supply suitable character references and be prepared to complete a Garda vetting application form,

Both positions are available to view on the website (reference numbers 2027704 and 2034649 respectively).

Meanwhile, the AGM of the KCCEC Board of Directors will take place at 7pm Thursday 24 June 2017

Service users and interested members of the wider community are invited to the meeting where the audited accounts will be presented, and the the many highlights of the past year will be reviewed.

The Board for the coming year will be elected at the meeting.

Another Tennis Club registration day

Another registration day for new members of Kilcullen Tennis Club will take place next Saturday between 11am-3pm.

The Club says last Saturday's first such event was 'very successful', and that membership is building at a fast rate.

It is hoped the Club will be open for play from 3 June, and memberships will be valid from that date.

Membership fees are Senior €170; Junior U10 €45, U16 €55, U18 €65; Student €65; and Family €340.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Help sought to tidy up derelict building

Kilcullen Community Action Tidy Towns is looking for a sponsor or sponsors to renovate the derelict house at Hillside featured in our top photo, writes Brian Byrne.

The voluntary group estimates that the work to make it no longer an eyesore would cost just €600 and would be a huge improvement to that part of town.

"Donations of even €5 towards the project would be welcome and if there were enough, it would fund it," says the group's Noel Clare. "It would also be useful if there were people to help fit the mock windows and to paint the building and provide paint."

Noel points out that the owners of the former Ruby Shoes have already been working on improving their premises (bottom left), and there are also discussions taking place with the owners of the building (bottom right) next to Kilcullen Credit Union, to bring about improvements there.

With the 'Kilcullen in Bloom' flowers soon to make the town look very summery, cleaning up the derelict buildings would help make the town look even better.

Scoil Bhride pupils learn about '98 at battle site

Sixth class students with their teachers and helpers from Scoil Bhride spent the morning learning about Old Kilcullen in 1798 and visited the site to mark the anniversary of the battle, writes Gerry O'Donoghue.

They explored the churchyard and laid flowers at the grave of 'Patrick Cullen, who departed this life on the 24th May 1798'.

Any information on Patrick Cullen would really appreciated.

Great birdwatch evening

A great time was had by all who attended the Kilcullen Tidy Towns Birdwatch evening yesterday as part of the Kildare Biodiversity week, writes Ray Kelly.

The talk in O'Connells Bar was presented by Neil Bourke and Paddy Kennedy of Birdwatch Ireland's Kildare branch. The large attendance were given a snapshot of the over 40-plus species (yes, 40+) of birds identified in the area between the Valley Park and the Bridge Community River walk.

Neil gave us valuable information on how to recognise various bird calls, where certain birds live and how common or in some cases how rare some birds are.

The talk was followed by a walking tour that commenced at the rear of the Heritage Centre. Just then a large swan appeared magically through the centre arch of the Bridge to create a spectacular start to the walk. The group then traversed both sides of the river for more adventures.

Ducks, wagtails, swifts, swallows, warblers, pigeons, doves, and crows were some of the birds we got to see and hear.

Overall it was a very informative and enjoyable evening, and thanks to Neil and Paddy for the information and their time.

Thanks also to the Bridge Community and Kilcullen Town for what are two fantastic amenities — the Nature Trail and the Valley Park, which are accessible to all residents and visitors to enjoy. Real gems.

Business award for Kilcullen resident scientist

Kilcullen resident Deirdre Kelly was awarded the Emerging Business Woman of the Year accolade by Network Kildare last weekend, writes Brian Byrne.

Her business, Kelly Scientific, compiles specialist market analysis reports for the pharma and biotechnology industries. Clients include many top global companies in those areas as well as academic institutions and state agencies. Among them are Pfizer, Bayer, Sony, Merck, Abbott, J&J, P&G, Beckman Coulter, Amgen and the World Health Organization.

Deirdre's market analyses cover such subjects as Personalized Medicine, Targeted Therapeutics and Companion Diagnostics; Cancer Biomarkers; Cancer Immunotherapeutics; Cosmetic Surgery Products & Services; and Pharma Industry reports on China and India.

Deirdre has a PhD in Medicine, Genetics, Immunology (RCSI); an MSc in Biotechnology (NUIG); and a BA(Mod) in Biochemistry from Trinity College Dublin. Originally from Castledermot, she has lived in Dublin and Cork, and moved to Kilcullen two years ago with her husband Ger and two small children.

Before she founded Kelly Scientific, she worked as a research scientist and lecturer in Trinity College, UCC and Teagasc. In parallel she was a scientific writer with New York-based TriMark Publications, and established Kelly Scientific after noticing an unmet need for specific market analysis projects within her areas of interest. She had always had a keen interest in industry, which prompted her to explore the healthcare business space further.

Funding support was provided by the Kildare Local Enterprise Office, and through them and Network Kildare, Deirdre was able to access mentors with expertise in marketing and business development. She has used internet and digital marketing very successfully to advance her business.

The awards ceremony was at the Palmerstown House Estate in Naas on Friday 19 May and guests included the Mayor of Kildare, Cllr Ivan Keatley; Mary Mitchell-O’Connor, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation; Jacqui McNabb, Head of Enterprise at County Kildare LEO; TDs Martin Heydon, Bernard Durkan, Fiona O’Loughlin, and James Lawless; and Allan Shine, CEO of Kildare Chamber.

Deirdre is pictured above (right) receiving her award from Minister Mary Mitchell-O'Connor, with Pauline Forde, President of Network Kildare.

St Vincent's charity auction a success

The recent charity auction in aid of St Vincent's Hospital in Athy raised almost €10,300, writes Brian Byrne.

Director of Nursing at the Hospital Helen Dreelan told the Diary that they are 'absolutely delighted' with the outcome and she wishes to thank auctioneer Leon Kenny and Athy GAA Club, and the many volunteers which made it possible.

Kilcullen has a long history of supporting St Vincent's. Pictured above are Josie Connelly with Helen and Kilcullen friends on their annual fundraising walk for the hospital.

Helen adds a special word of thanks to all who donated items, and those who came and 'spent lots of money on the day'.