Rathkeale, Co Limerick

Category Three: Population Category 1,000 – 2000

Winner: Rathkeale, Co Limerick


Rathkeale is a unique town in west Limerick in that over one-fifth of its population comprises people who self-identify as Travellers. While it faces a number of social and community issues and economic decline, the town still offers an attractive range of activities and facilities, in areas such as volunteering, sport, music and education. The Pre-Social Cohesion Project works to bring together all communities – Traveller and Settled Community – in the town. It is unique in that it promotes cross-community leadership and understanding and encourages the development of civic pride. The work of the project is defined and carried out by an ecumenical committee consisting of representatives from both the Settled and Traveller communities and local Churches. Recent initiatives have included training days on issues such as human development and spiritual development, a health information morning, and a variety of social events. The community strives to build healthy relationships in Rathkeale. A presentation was delivered in Seanad Eireann.

Community Contact: Iona Hennessy, [email protected]


The winning entry is about a town and the resolution of issues within that town. Various local events have now been organized on a cross community basis, between the Traveller and Settled Communities. The Pre Social Cohesion Group epitomizes what can be achieved when people come together and work to achieve the extraordinary.