Donegal launches Show Racism the Red Card

Fists up in the air to Show Racism the Red Card!The Letterkenny Aura Leisure Centre was the venue for the well attended launch of “Show Racism the Red Card” initiative which was launched by Pat the Cope Gallagher Chairman of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Arts Sport and Tourism.Picture Credits: Danny Lee (Donegal Sports Partnership)The initiative which has been supported nationally by the Football Association of Ireland, Gaelic Players Association, Professional Footballers Association of Ireland, Basketball Ireland and the Office of the Minister for Integration encourages society to promote the integration of all cultures and to have a society free from racism.Pictured: Back row: Trevor Scanlon (FAI CDO), Anthony Gorman (Ex Finn Harps and Linfield FC), Ryan Haire (Cricket Ireland), Eloka Asoka (Finn Harps), Rory Kavanagh (Donegal SFC), David Magee (Badminton Ireland)Front row: Des Tomlinson (FAI Intercultural Officer), Lee Gooch (Highland Radio), Margaret Toner Letterkenny CDP), Garrett Mullan, Pat the Cope Gallagher (TD), Myles Sweeney (Donegal Sports Partnership), Joe Mc Hugh (TD)In Donegal the launch of the programme has been supported by Donegal Sports Partnership, Finn Harps FC, FAI, Basketball Ireland, Badminton Ireland, Cricket Ireland, Donegal GAA, Donegal County Council, Letterkenny Town Council and Letterkenny Community Development Project.Pictured: Rory Haire (Cricket Ireland International) takes a question from the audience. Beside him are Finn Harps player Eloka Asokah, ex – Harps and Linfield player Anthony Gorman, Donegal County GAA player Rory Kavanagh and Badminton Ireland’s David Magee Speaking at the launch Pat the Cope Gallagher stated that;‘We see this ever expanding role in our society through the development of many social inclusion programme which support integration and inclusion of many of our more marganilised groups in society through sport. It is important that this work continues in order to firstly promote integration but also to encourage a greater participation in sport and physical activity’He commended all of the local statutory, sporting, community agencies for coming together to promote the initiative in Donegal.Pictured: Donegal’s Rory Kavanagh and his studentsGarrett Mullan, National Coordinator of Show Racism the Red Card stated that unfortunately research reveals that racism is a feature of Irish society with one in three immigrants declaring that they have experienced racism. He also said that through the support of the education pack which would be made available to all schools and community groups that future would bring a more integrated and racism free society.Many of key personalities from the world of sport made themselves available for a very interesting questions and answer session which was directed by compare of the launch radio and tv personality Lee Gooch. Among the sporting personalities were Finn Harps player Eloka Asokah, Donegal County GAA player Rory Kavanagh, International Cricket Player Ryan Haire, David Magee from Badminton Ireland and former Finn Harps and Linfield player Anthony Gorman. The testing questions which were all related to racism in sport were expertly delivered by the children from the local primary schools of Scoil Cholmcille, Scoil Mhuire gan Smal and Ballyraine National School.Following this the children had the opportunity to particpate in some fun games organised by the different sporting bodies.The next step for Show Racism the Red Card is to send out an education pack to all 179 primary schools in the County. The pack includes a DVD and teaching book with activites centered around racism. The film includes interviews with many famous footballers and sports people who talk about the causes and consequences of racism, and what they want to see changing in sport, and in Irish society. The booklet presents several activities to consider and combat racism with different age groups, such as role-play scenarios, and writing activities. Donegal Sports Partnership and Gareth Mullen, National Coordinator for Show Racism the Red Card, would like to thank everyone who attended the day especially Balliraine N.S, Scoil Cholmcille and Scoil Mhuire gan Smal, Pat the Cope Gallagher, invited guests and all the volunteers and coaches from the different Governing Bodies of Sport.Donegal Sports Partnership would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the sponsors who so generiously contribitues to and supported the launch of “Show Racism The Red Card”

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