Yesterday was an emotional day for us and our guests who joined us for our Open Day, and for our evening Reception, as we wish farewell to our beloved home for over 40 years, Cherish House, in advance of our move to Smithfield next month and also celebrate 45 years since the founding of Cherish/One Family.
Our first President, Mary Robinson and our current president, Mary Henry, joined our founders, Board members, current and past staff, clients, friends and colleagues to view an exhibition, “Letters from our Mothers”. It features a selection of letters we received from women all over the country who were pregnant or mothers and unmarried, and their mothers, throughout the 1970s.
It was wonderful that women who lived in Cherish House from the 80s up to 12 years ago with their babies returned home accompanied by those same babies, now adults, to share photos and memories across the decades.
We celebrated our journey and acknowledged all that we have achieved since we formed in 1972, including the abolition of the status of illegitimacy and the introduction of the One Parent Family Payment. We remembered friends and colleagues central to that journey who we have lost. We committed to continue our work towards a society where all children are cherished equally, where all families are recognised, where lone parents are valued, and where no child suffers as a result of poverty.
Most of all, we celebrated our founders whose spirit, grit and sheer humour inspire us every day!
We thank our founders. We thank Sinéad Gibney for her powerful performance of her poem that captures the truth of being a lone parent, Enda Reilly for the beautiful music, and everyone who joined us throughout the day yesterday to give our wonderful building the farewell it deserved. Thank you to FX Buckley Steakhouses who supported our celebration with provision of wonderful food and wine, and their great staff team.
We look forward to being able to provide more services to parents and their children in our new premises in Coke Lane, Smithfield, Dublin 7 when we open our doors there on Tuesday 1 August 2017.
A photo album from our Farewell and 45th celebration can be enjoyed on this link.