Family Day Fest sign

All Families Celebrated at Family Day Festival 2014

One Family’s fourth Family Day Festival took place yesterday and was enjoyed by thousands of happy people, children and adults alike, in Dublin’s beautiful Iveagh Gardens – despite the rain.

The annual free Festival is the highlight of One Family’s ongoing campaign for a nationally celebrated Family Day, similar to Mother’s Day or Father’s Day, but which would include all children irrespective of their family make-up. We have been celebrating Family Day for a decade. The Festival, which takes place every year on the Sunday following UN International Day of Families on 15 May, presented a fun, jam-packed programme of workshops from acting to yoga, and butter making to boxing with Olympian Michael Carruth; main stage entertainment with MC Aidan Bishop including magician Brian Daly, Musicantia Roma Children’s Choir, the Nepalese Cultural Group (NCG) and singer Sinéad White; pop-up play opportunities and traditional sports and games; and many of Ireland’s leading cultural organisations for children with fun activities such as puppet shows, arts and crafts, storytelling and more.

The Family Day Festival is a fantastic day out but as the Irish Times noted this week, it also ‘carries a subtle message‘. This message is that all families should be cherished. We know that it is the quality of relationships in the home, not family make-up, that is most important for children’s well-being and Family Day celebrates all the different types of families that make up today’s Irish society. One Family, GLEN, Marriage Equality, Treoir, BeLong To, New Communities Partnership, ISPCC and Children’s Rights Alliance were among the organisations working with and for families who were on hand in the Information Village to have fun and engage with families about their services.

A favourite of this year’s event was the new One Family Talking Tent which presented parenting talks by One Family, Marriage Equality, GLEN and BeLonG To. The Talking Tent line-up also featured powerful spoken word performances from Colm Keegan and John Cummins, and comic verse for children with Paul Tubb. We were delighted to host the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Oisín Quinn. Minister John Hayes TD and Senator Averil Power also attended and joined in the fun.

Ireland’s celebration of the 20th anniversary of UN International Year of the Family 2014 was a great success.

View the Family Day Festival 2014 photo album for lots of fun photos!

If you were there, please take a short anonymous survey by clicking here to help us make next year’s Family Day Festival even better.

Thank you to all the performers and entertainers who created magical memories for so many families throughout the day. Thank you to the participating organisations, to the production staff, and to all of the incredible Family Day Festival volunteers.

The Family Day Festival is kindly supported by the Community Foundation for Ireland, Dublin City Council (DCC) and Today FM. The Iveagh Gardens is provided courtesy of the Office of Public Works (OPW). One Family is grateful to all.

If your organisation would like to get involved in 2015, we’d love to hear from you. Email or call us on 01 662 9212 to find out more.