Group reaching out to other women with network launch

A GROUP of women empowered through an education initiative running in north Kerry in recent years have now launched a countywide network to reach out and empower women everywhere.

The Kerry Women's Interactive Network (KWIN) is to be launched at a women's conference in Tralee on Friday, November 8, and is set to revolutionise life for hundreds more.

The Equality for Women Measure course (EWM), run by North and East Kerry Development, gave hundreds of women, who were previously living isolated lives in the rural region, a completely new sense of purpose and renewed appreciation for their lives.

Running a comprehensive variety of training courses, it has seen scores returning to education and going on as far as third-level.

But rather than forgetting their sisters scattered in rural areas across north and east Kerry and beyond they are now reaching out in a real and meaningful way with the launch of KWIN.

Women everywhere are urged to attend the conference for the launch of the network at the Manor West Hotel, Tralee, on Friday, November 8, next.

"It actually came about when funding for the EWM was cut," co-ordinator Dee Keogh explained. "Rather than giving up on the EWM our members continued to meet and then came up with the idea of the Women's Network as a way of reaching out to other women to share the benefit of their experience."

Funding for the EWM was reinstated after a successful lobbying campaign by the women in an example of how empowered they had become. Pobal, meanwhile, has come on board to contribute to the first stages of the new Network.

"We urge women to come along from all over the county on the day. The network aims, really, to map the women of Kerry and show where we are, how we can keep in contact with one another and help each other out in our personal and professional lives now. It's going to give us a fantastic database to help more and more women achieve success in their lives," Ms Keogh said.

Radio Kerry's Deirdre Walsh is to open the conference, with feminist Ailbhe Smyth and columnist Máiréad Lavery also taking part.

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