Wednesday 22 November 2017

Chef Rachel cooks up classy delight


Mike McGrath

The fund-raising cookery demonstration featuring celebrity TV chef Rachel Allen held in aid of Churchtown National School attracted a capacity attendance at the Charleville Park Hotel on last Thursday night.

The attendance enjoyed the experience of seeing the expertise of Ms Allen in the kitchen at first hand.

School Principal Donal O'Shea was on hand to meet and greet members of the audience who turned out in force to support the village school in their efforts to raise money to purchase a Lift off Literacy Programme, which has been introduced to the pupils of the rural co-educational school located in the beautiful village, which is part of the Ballyhoura Way.

"Our goal is the creation of an environment that develops children into young people who are confident, independent and capable of functioning competently in society, as individuals and in groups," said Mr O'Shea. "With our pupils we promote respect for self and for others and tolerance and kindness towards those who may differ in any way. We wish pupils to enjoy the experience of learning and for each child to achieve their true potential.

"All the proceeds from tonight's event will go directly towards the Literacy Lift Off programme which has been introduced in the school. This programme is extremely beneficial to the childrens' learning outcomes. Children learn to read and write by getting lots of opportunities to read books at their own level of competency and gradually lift the complexity of what they can do in both reading and writing," said Mr. O'Shea.

He also thanked the board of management, staff and Parents Association, and all those who helped make the event such a success. "In particular, we wish to thank all our sponsors and stall holders. Without their support, it would not have been possible to host such a considerable night. We hope that they will also benefit from tonight with increased awareness and support for their businesses," he said.

"While it was necessary to limit the number of sponsors and stall holders, we would like to acknowledge all other businesses who have so generously supported our school over the years. It is important that we all support those who support our school, helping to grow our local economy for the benefit of all and the future of our children.

"We wish to thank all the parents and wider community who supported us in the run up to tonight's event through buying and selling tickets and donating so many wonderful prizes. Thank you also to those who are helping here this evening.

"On a personal note, I would like to thank the school staff and everyone who gave so much of their time over the last few months to make the night such a wonderful success," he said.

Churchtown has a population of 600 people and the village has been rejuvenated in recent years. It has enjoyed an influx of people settling there in what has become a very desirable residential centre close to both Charleville and Mallow.

Located some three miles from the main Cork/Limerick N20 roadway, Churchtown was upgraded by a village renewal project committee headed by local man Gerry Murphy. This saw the erection of residential estates boosting the population numbers, an upgraded sports field and GAA Hall along with pieces of street art to enhance the village streetscape.

The local school was built in 1945 and now has 105 pupils ranging from junior infants to 12 years. The night was to fund the massive investment in resources in the ongoing running of the school.


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