Media Release 30 June 2011
Following a HSE report earlier this week which found that over a third of women describe their pregnancy as a crisis pregnancy, One Family, the national organisation for one-parent families, announces a 10% increase in demand for its Welfare to Work services. The announcement is made in its 2010 Annual Report and Strategy, to be launched at The Coach House, Dublin Castle at 12 noon on Friday 1 July.
‘These Welfare to Work services support lone parents, some of whom have experienced a crisis pregnancy, into sustainable employment, ‘explains Karen Kiernan, Director of One Family, ‘Access to education and careers are vital gateways to move families out of poverty. Our courses show parents what is possible in their lives – and then support them to make the necessary changes to get there.’
One Family offers welfare to work and parenting programmes, all of which are underpinned by a desire to improve opportunities and quality of life for parents – and for their children. On Friday 1 July at Dublin Castle, over 100 proud lone parents will celebrate their graduation from these programmes.
Kiernan continues, ‘These parents see the value and necessity of education. They realise that education takes a long term commitment, but know that it will help them achieve better paid, higher level jobs to support their families. Their work with our Welfare to Work courses such as ‘New Futures’ is the first step on this path. 80% of our graduates move on to mainstream third level education.’
Breffny Morgan, the Cork-born Harvard graduate that took Irish TV by storm in 2009 by participating on TV3’s flagship reality show, The Apprentice, will speak at the event, giving his positive experiences of growing up in a one-parent family. ‘I consider myself the proud product of a single-parent family. My hope is that others raised in similar circumstances can relate to that sense of pride.’
Each year One Family encourages hundreds of people who parent alone to achieve their goals through a variety of innovative programmes. These include parenting workshops for mums and dads, career planning and back to work programmes – and even an employment training and work placement initiative with Marks and Spencers. Lone parents from across Ireland will join Morgan at Dublin Castle to receive their certificates of participation and to hear details of One Family’s future strategy.
Glynis Curtis, who completed one of these welfare to work programmes, ‘New Futures’, explains, ‘I had totally lost my way and had no idea where to turn, when one day a friend forwarded an email that changed my life. It was a poster for ‘New Futures’ being run by One Family’.
Angela Velazquez, who also took part in ‘New Futures’ comments, ‘The course taught me to accept that I was a lone parent and that this was OK. Up until then in many ways I really hadn’t acknowledged my situation. The course helped me open my mind and gave me the confidence and motivation I needed to move forward.’
Photo opportunity with Breffny Morgan and One Family Graduates at The Coach House, Dublin Castle, 1.00pm
For copies of Strategy and Annual Report please download PDFs:
For further information please contact:
Karen Kiernan, Director, One Family, 086 8509191
Stuart Duffin, Welfare to Work Manager, One Family 087 0622023