Featured STEA Business of the Month – SOS Personal Training

SOS Personal Training by Joanne Griffin

Feel intimidated about starting an exercise regime? Training with Sean O Sullivan – SOS Personal Training will help build your confidence and give you that feel good factor simply because Sean will work with your strengths. Training with SOS Personal Training will prove to be a completely relaxed and fun experience whilst getting the results you want to achieve.

Sean is a remarkably passionate, skilled and dedicated personal trainer who is never complacent when it comes to the services he offers and so is always hungry to offer more at his outdoor bootcamps in Cromane, Co. Kerry which last for one hour in a circuit based session. Examples include the use of kettlebells and dumbbells, Cardio Work such as Step Aerobics and Shuttle Runs, Resistance Training such as Squat Jumps and Lunges.

Sean’s enthusiasm for sport, exercise and health is highlighted in his own fitness training. He has played with the Kingdom at all levels for many years, 11 in total and won four All-Ireland Medals in his beloved green and gold Kerry Jersey. His wealth of experience combined with his National Elite Fitness Professional Certificate from Image Fitness Training in Cork means he is not only able to provide his clients with a Scientific Health, Nutrition & Exercise Programme but also an exciting and motivating training experience.

From the start of 2014, Sean will also be offering one-to-one personal training sessions, either indoor or outdoor depending on the client’s preference. Further information can be found by contacting Sean at  which is currently under construction or on facebook @ SOS-Personal-Training.

This exciting enterprise emerged in 2013 with the help of the Short Term Enterprise Allowance (STEA) facilitated by South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd (SKDP). This scheme encourages people getting certain social welfare payments to take up self employment opportunities by allowing them to retain a proportion of their social welfare payment, plus secondary benefits.

For further information on the BTWEA or STEA, please contact an Enterprise Officer from SKDP in your area. Joanne Griffin (Killorglin and Kenmare) on 087 615 2660 or Anne O Riordan (Cahersiveen and Killarney) on 066 947 2724.


South Kerry Business Directory Launched

South Kerry Business Directory expected to enhance opportunities for small businesses in the region

A large crowd attended the launch of the new South Kerry Local Trades and Services Directory in Killorglin this week. The directory has been produced by South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd. (SKDP)and is aimed at highlighting and promoting the businesses started up through the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance and the Short Term Enterprise Allowance Schemes which are run through the partnership. The launch was performed by Deputy Brendan Griffin and a number of other local representatives were also in attendance.

Speaking at the launch Deputy Brendan Griffin praised SKDP for their vision in launching such a directory and said he hoped that it would encourage people in the region to look to local small businesses for products and services. “I would also hope this directory would act as encouragement for other people who are unemployed in the region to avail of the opportunities that these schemes offer them to start up their own businesses” Deputy Griffin said.

SKDP CEO Noel Spillane said that the directory highlights the range of products and services that can be sourced from local small businesses in the South Kerry region and he hoped that this directory would also encourage people from beyond the region to avail of the opportunities these businesses provide. “We would hope to update this directory again next year to help ensure it becomes recognised as a key source of information for people hoping to source products and services in South Kerry” Noel said.

Michael Kenneally of the Department of Social Protection outlined the benefits to those availing of the two schemes in starting up a business and said he hoped more people would look towards the route of becoming self employed in the future.

Chairman of the Enterprise and Employment working group of SKDP, Stewart Stephens said the directory was an ideal marketing tool for the businesses involved and one they should aim to maximise on.

The directory will be distributed throughout South Kerry and is free of charge. Copies of it are also available through the South Kerry Development Partnership Offices in Cahersiveen, Killorglin, Killarney and Kenmare.


Smoke Alarm Scheme

The smoke alarm scheme is run by Kerry County Council in partnership with the Kerry Fire Service  and South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd.

Training on the proper installation of the smoke alarms was provided by Kerry Fire Service prior to the launch of the scheme some years back..  Rural Social Scheme and TÚS participants install the alarms.

Those interested in having smoke alarms installed in their homes or who want to get more information on the scheme can contact the RSS & TÚS supervisors in Killorglin, Killarney, Kenmare of Cahersiveen


Help and advice for small businesses to “Work their way out of Recession”

Small business owners from all parts of Kerry are being invited to take part in a half day workshop to help them get through the current recession. The event entitled “Work your way out of Recession”, which is organised by South Kerry Skillnets operated through South Kerry Development Partnership, takes place on Monday 22nd of October in The Brehon Hotel in Killarney.

Among the keynote speakers are Jerry Kennelly of Tweat, Brian McCarthy of FEXCO, Colm Healy of Skellig Chocolates and Marketing Lecturer with the IT Tralee Breda O’Dwyer. In addition to the speakers, a number of consultants who have provided training through the Skillnets programme will be on hand to offer advice to business owners on what assistance is available to them. The event will offer business owners the chance to network and establish new business contacts.

Skillnets manager Paul Murphy said that the event aims to ensure small business owners know what help is there for them in the current recessionary period and to give them advice and encouragement on how to tackle many issues they may be facing at present. “The keynote speakers have all faced difficulties in their business careers and are ideally placed to address the issues facing small business owners” Paul said, adding that it is an ideal opportunity for business owners to raise issues that are affecting them.

The event will also feature a number of business people whose companies have availed of training through Skillnets who will outline the benefits they got from this training and the opportunities that exist for other businesses to benefit from similar training courses.

The event is free of charge for small business owners but given that places are limited booking in advance is required. For more information or to make a booking please contact Skillnets Manager Paul Murphy or Skillnets officer Tracy Teehan on 066 9762477 or e-mail [email protected] .


2103 Rural Biz Winners Announced

7 of the more than 50 entrants countywide in this year’s Rural Biz competition were presented with their prizes at the awards night in Killarney this week. The competition organised by South Kerry Development Partnership in conjunction with NEKD aims to encourage people with new business ideas to come forward and hopefully progress onto setting up new businesses in the county. The competition and prizes is supported by the RDP (LEADER) project as well as a range of sponsors including Kerry County Enterprise Board, Dan Tim O’Sullivan, Lee Strand, McCarthy Insurances, Teagasc and Radio Kerry. More than €17,500 in prizes and equipment grants was presented to the prize winners at the ceremony.

The overall winner of the innovation award of €5,000 sponsored by KECB was Lactain Spring from Ballyrameen, Castlemaine with his idea Quick Clean Water Trough. This product enables fresh clean water to be available for cattle at each grazing thus helping to stop the spread of water borne diseases.

The first prize in the SDKP section went to Dominic Lyne from Valentia with his idea Westcoast 4×4 that adapts vehicles to cater for drivers with special requirements. The second prize in the region went to Paul O’Connell with his Safe Jack idea for tractors to enable farmers change wheels on vehicles safely while the Gaeltacht region prize went to John Goggin for his new tours business idea.

In North Kerry, the first prize went to Eileen McClure of Kitchen Incubators in Farranfore while the second prize went to Katie Hassett with her business idea Championship Wellies while their Gaeltacht area prize went to Muireann Nic Fiolla Ruadh from the Dingle Cookery School.

Speaking at the event SKDP CEO Noel Spillane praised all of those who took part in the competition and highlighted the fact that many of the previous prize winners have gone on to establish very successful businesses including Joe Daly in Valentia and the  Ring of Kerry Quality Lamb group. He added that SKDP and NEKD as well as the County Enterprise Board would provide every support possible to this year’s entrants to enable them make their business idea a reality.

Brian Lesley of the Farmers Journal, who was master of ceremonies for the evening, said that there needs to be a change of attitude towards failure in Ireland. “So what if you fail, get back up again and be stronger for the failure” was his advice to the audience.

John Foley of NEKD also praised the entrants for their courage in bringing their ideas forward and encouraged all of them, whether they won prizes or not to continue to develop their ideas.

Last year’s Rural Biz winner Tony McCarthy also addressed the audience on his progress to get his invention Mac Attach into production and he is due to meet with a potential business partner from Germany later in this week.


Patsy Cronin RIP – A Tribute

Patsy Cronin was the Chairperson of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd.  Patsy was appointed Chairperson of S.K.D.P on 27th September 2005 and held the position up until his death on the 30th October 2013.     Patsy Cronin also served various terms as a director, being the I.C.T.U nominee, on the board of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd.  Indeed Patsy Cronin was one of two SIPTU nominees in attendance at the very first board meeting of S.K.D.P held on 24th May 1991.

South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd was formed in 1991, under the PESP (Programme for Economic & Social Progress).  The Partnership  Companies were formed to provide a local community led response to the economic & social problems of rural areas, where the local community could work in partnership with the social partners (Trade Unions, employer’s bodies, farming organisation), statutory agencies and local government, in tackling the economic and social difficulties of rural areas.  South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd is a rural development company that works to improve the quality of life for citizens living in South Kerry through a range of economic, social, cultural & community development initiatives.   Addressing poverty, disadvantage and social exclusion are key aims of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd.

Patsy Cronin was very proud of the work of SKDP. The voluntary time commitment required of Patsy as both the Chairperson and a director on the board of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd was very significant.  In his role as Chairperson, Patsy chaired the monthly board meetings of S.K.D.P and also chaired a number of important sub-committees and workings groups within S.K.D.P.  He was a very effective chairperson, respected by all the board, reflected in the fact that he held the position of chair for over eight years.  Working closely with the C.E.O, Patsy as Chairperson guided SKDP in its work.  He was extremely fair, every board member was allowed time to make their contribution, but when a board meeting needed to be called to order, Patsy was well able to do so. He was a very skilled negotiator and he brought these skills to bear on several occasions as Chairperson of S.K.D.P.  Patsy had a very strong sense of social justice. Fairness, respect & equality were core values for Patsy and these values were reflected in his work with SKDP and by extension with SKDP’s work with the communities SKDP serves.  Patsy Cronin firmly believed in partnership working, in taking a partnership approach to addressing the economic & social challenges facing communities.  The board of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd consists of four key pillars, 1 – community & voluntary sector, 2 – Social Partners, 3 – Statutory Agencies and 4 – Local Government.  Patsy Cronin brought all four key pillars on the board of SKDP together and ensured that they were able to operate effectively together.  The strong emphasis and importance that Patsy placed on partnership working ensured that the partnership ethos was intrinsic in the manner in which SKDP approached its work.

Patsy Cronin had a very strong sense of civic duty and responsibility.  He believed in the importance of citizens giving of their time voluntarily for the good of their communities, becoming involved in community & voluntary activity, making a contribution and utilising their skills and abilities for the betterment of their local areas.  Patsy’s involvement with his own community of Killorglin was a case in point.  He held positions with the local GAA club, Laune Rangers, was a very active member of the C.Y.M.S Hall (Community Hall in Killorglin) Management Committee, and spearheaded many of their development initiatives.  Patsy was also heavily involved with the Killorglin Pantomime group (And Indeed played a starring role in many of their plays!!!!).  He was also heavily involved with Killorglin Golf Club and more recently he was also a member of the Killorglin Archive Society, which was established to preserve the history and heritage of the Killorglin area by collecting and archiving old stories, recordings & film.     He was very proud of his roots in Langford Street Killorglin where he grew up and had a deep pride and affection for his community.  Patsy Cronin’s strong sense of civic responsibility, his belief in community & voluntary activity, his desire to empower local communities to address local economic & social challenges, meant he was a very ‘natural fit’ for South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd.

Through his work with South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd, Patsy utilised the platform that SKDP provided to ensure that national and E.U. rural development resources were utilised to support, empower and develop local communities in implementing economic, community & social development initiatives.  Patsy Cronin was a strong believer and supporter of ‘bottom up’ Community Led Local Development, where local communities are at the heart of key decisions with regard to local development initiatives, where local development strategies are designed in response to local needs, with local ownership and local delivery.  Patsy Cronin was resolute in his determination to ensure that South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd, a community led local development company, would not be undermined in any way and that the ‘bottom up’ community led approach to local community development  as implemented by South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd would not be irreparably damaged.   Hence he was very outspoken and critical of Government plans, with regard to the alignment of local government and local development as published in the ‘Putting people first – Action Programme for Effective Local Government’ .     At a public meeting held in the CYMS Hall in Killorglin, held on May 2nd 2013, attended by over 300 people, Patsy Cronin rallied community activists in South Kerry against the proposals.  Patsy Cronin’s commitment to the work of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd and the communities SKDP serves was absolute and he very generously gave of his time.

Patsy Cronin was also held in very high esteem at a national level within local development circles.  A measure of his stature with all local development companies across the country can be gauged from the fact that in October 2009, Patsy Cronin was elected the first ever Chairperson of the Irish Local Development Network (ILDN).  ILDN was a new organisation, established in late 2009, representing the interests of 50 Local Development Companies, including South Kerry Development Partnership, across the country. In this role, he oversaw the integration of a variety of different cultures, regions and people with the aim of establishing one organisation to represent both rural and urban communities. He undertook this new role with vigour, energy and enthusiasm, using his well-honed negotiation skills developed from his trade union days. Patsy made a conscious effort to develop key relationships with key Departments and officials to ensure that the new organisation, that ILDN was, was recognised as the first reference point for the management and roll out of new national programmes as well as strengthening the delivery of existing ones in the areas of enterprise development and social inclusion. He also oversaw the establishment of the new structure of the ILDN organisation and worked on the basis of building and strengthening working relationships both within and outside of the network. Patsy’s mantra was that negotiation was the only way to make progress and in the challenging times of the past few years, his mantra held true. Patsy worked for the interests of progressing the work of member companies and by extension, the communities that they serve. Patsy was a gentleman and a man with a kind and considerate heart who was highly regarded by all ILDN members. His capacity to bring people through difficult times with a positive outlook will be one of his many enduring legacies in the memories of ILDN’s members.

Patsy Cronin held the position of Chairperson of ILDN until September 2013.

Patsy Cronin’s death leaves a huge void within South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd that will not be easily filled.  His affable & personal nature, his wit, great humour, sense of fun, generosity and commitment to the work of SKDP will be sorely missed by all who knew and worked with him.

May he rest in peace.    We wish to extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to his family and many many friends.

Noel Spillane

Chief Executive Officer

South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd

On Behalf of the Board, Management & Staff of South Kerry Development Partnership Ltd.

Graveside Reflection by SIPTU General Secretary Joe O’Flynn