A recent Diversity Day event in Gorey Civic highlighted the many people and cultures that make up and contribute to the Gorey community.
Organised by Wexford Local Development (WLD), the event brought together residents of the Courtown Hotel, Gorey councillors, local organisations and local students for a day of connection and sharing. According to Client Support Worker with WLD, Salah Haddad, it was a really positive occasion.
"The aim just to get these lads connected, engaged and integrated into the community,” he explained. “The idea is to say to the local community that we are here. We are trying to give back to the Irish community and participate in positive ways.”
The event also gave the men an opportunity to raise some of the issues that they face with local representatives. According to Salah, some of the main issues include the long wait they face in obtaining a work permit and limited public transport from Courtown to Gorey, where many of them attend or wish to attend educational courses.
Approximately 90 people of 15 nationalities are living in Courtown Hotel, said Salah. While the majority of them are from Somalia, there are also residents from Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Algeria, Morocco, Sudan, Afghanisation and Pakistan, among other places.
According to Salah, integration into the local community is the ‘main target’ for them.
"In terms of training, education and work, we try to find the correct opportunities available for them to start a new life here,” he added.