Saturday, 19 August, 2017

3 Clare adult learning organisations shortlisted for a Munster STAR Award

17 Feb 2012 02:16 PM

A Dragons Den style summer school, a Kilkee based currach building project and the Clare DEAL project (Development Education in Adult Learning) have all made the shortlist for the AONTAS STAR Awards this year. The Dragons Den summer school supported students at the VTOS Centre in Kilrush to develop ideas for new local enterprises. Seol Sionna is a VEC supported project based on the Loop Head peninsula which trained participants in boat building skills with the aim of producing a 19th century Shannon Hooker. The Clare DEAL project provides adult education with a global dimension, introducing learners to topics such as fair trade and debt.

The STAR Awards recognise outstanding examples of adult education in Ireland. This year five Awards will be given - four provincial awards and one nationwide award. The STAR Awards is now in its sixth year, with the number of entries increasing from last year. This year AONTAS received 119 entries from adult education organisations all around the country.

The winners will be announced at the STAR Awards Ceremony on February 20th.

The shortlist was developed by an Independent Judging Panel, who will now hit the road to meet with the ten hopeful groups. 'The judging panel has had to make some tough decisions this year' said AONTAS Director Berni Brady. 'There were 34 projects nominated in the Munster category, out of which ten made the shortlist. It's a real credit to organisations working in Clare. These three initiatives really demonstrate the diversity of adult learning - by supporting the development of rural enterprise, celebrating local cultures and making global connections. '

The next judging phase involves regional meetings with the shortlisted projects. During these meetings, organisations will be given the opportunity to talk to the judging panel and show why they should receive a STAR Award. 'We're encouraging the shortlisted groups to bring learners who have benefited from their services, or to show some of the work that they have done,' explained Ms Brady. The judges will then make a decision on a winner and a highly commended award in that category and the names will be held secret until the ceremony.

The judges will meet with shortlisted projects in the Munster Category at the Local Employment Service, Tait Business Centre, Limerick on Monday the 6th of February from 1pm to 5pm.

For more information/ contact
Niamh Farren, Communications Officer, AONTAS 01 406 8220/087 911 0569
Note to Editor
1. The STAR Awards is an initiative organised by AONTAS, the National Adult Learning Organisation. The Awards showcase teamwork and award recognition to adult learning organisations. More information about the awards and the Adult Learners' Festival is available from

2. Award winners will be announced at the ceremony on February 20th at the Burlington Hotel.