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Mayo Foundation turns to Mayo diaspora

A peaceful setting in Mayo where the stress of the busy world can be left behind. This farm participates in Western Care’s Social Farming Initiative


By Irish Echo Staff

Move over Christmas in Killarney. Think Christmas in Mayo!

The New York-based County Mayo Foundation has selected three non-profits that it believes will inspire the Mayo diaspora to offer their support this Christmas season.

According to a foundation release, at Mindspace Mayo, there is important work being done to provide young people, ages 15 through 25, with the necessary coping skills to deal with stress in their lives.

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Stated the release: “Recent research revealed that one in five Irish children has a mental health disorder. The dedicated staff at the welcoming Mindspace hub in Castlebar and at its outreach service facilities in Erris and Ballina offer a free early intervention support service that invites young people to talk about their concerns.

“Professionals from the non-profit also visit schools, workplaces and community groups across the county to heighten mental health awareness for all. It has already created a number of resilient school communities, helping to de-stigmatize mental health issues among the young.

“At Western Care, an organization made up of professional staff and volunteers, the goal is to give people with disabilities in Co. Mayo a full and satisfying life.

“Currently, Western Care is looking for funding to support two of its projects, the Mayo Arts & Disability Work and Social Farming.

“Working with a local community-led arts center, Western Care brings the joy of art and music to those with special needs, helping them gain confidence within themselves and enhancing their communication skills.”

The organization’s social farming initiative, added continued the release, offers people who are socially, physically, mentally or intellectually disadvantaged the opportunity to spend time on a family farm.

“Over the past two years, a number of people from Western Care have benefitted from this successful project. The chance to enjoy farm life, meet new people and spend time in the outdoors with nature has resulted in new friendships, as well as developing new skills and experiences.

“For ex-pats and others with close ties to the county, Claremorris Community Radio is an invaluable service.

“The volunteer-led not-for-profit community radio station broadcasts over the air and online, which means that listeners as far away as New York, Cleveland, Boston, Chicago and beyond can hear news from home that other, larger media outlets may not cover.

“All of its volunteers receive training in media and radio skills, making this a truly professional initiative.

“Once qualified, they become presenters, producers and researchers, all eager to broadcast the positive things that are happening in their communities.”

The County Mayo Foundation is organized and operates as a non-profit corporation under the non-profit corporation law of the State of New York.

Its purpose is to connect Mayo Diaspora living in the U.S. with the non-profit community in County Mayo.

The foundation also supports people and non-profit organizations in the U.S. who have ties to County Mayo. The foundation can be followed on Facebook at and on Twitter at

More on the foundation and information of how to donate can be found at