Bawnmore residents scoop prestigious award
Bawnmore and District Residents Association in Newtownabbey were over the moon when they scooped an impressive accolade in the prestigious all-Ireland IPB Pride of Place Awards 2022.
More than £134,000 has been invested in the estate over the last 10 years from the Department for Communities’ Small Pockets of Deprivation (SPOD) fund, which is administered by the Housing Executive as part of its Neighbourhood Renewal work.
The Bawnmore group was named runner-up in the Housing Estate category for their significant contribution to improving their area at a glittering awards ceremony in Dublin recently.
Created to promote and celebrate community development, the annual awards were started by the peace building charity Co-operation Ireland and highlight the selfless efforts of people who make better places to live, work and socialise.
The Bawnmore team was presented with £500 which they plan to use for services for children.
Seamus Kelly, association chairperson, said: “This was a brilliant achievement and SPOD has been marvelous for us.
“Thanks go to the Housing Executive, who also helped us litter pick and power-hose before the judges visited, and to the council for nominating us, as well as to the many people who have worked hard to transform the estate over the years.
“Because of SPOD money we have been able to organise different projects including an outreach service for young people, life coaching to boost mental health, a parent and toddler group, and cross-community work.
“We also put up a Christmas tree and crib each year, provide entertainment for older people and made up parcels for people in need during Covid.”
Elma Newberry, the Housing Executive’s Interim Director of Regional Services, said: “We are pleased to have been able to support the residents of Bawnmore over a number of years and we’re delighted that they have won this important recognition.
“The various projects are run by volunteers and they deserve to be commended for all their hard work and dedication in transforming this estate, for the support they provide to their neighbours and for their valuable grassroots cross-community work.”