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09 Dec 2021

National Award for Tipperary Town based crime and disability awareness project

In “Inside Out”, seven victims of crime shared their experiences with 12 Transition Year pupils from three secondary schools in Tipperary Town

National Award for Tipperary Town based crime and disability awareness project

L/R: Anne Bradshaw HSE, TY students Caitlin Wills Duddy and Miah Kelly, boxer gold medallist Kellie Harrington, Tipperary TY student Ellie Crowe, and Governor of Midlands Prison Theresa Beirne

A Tipperary-based crime and disability awareness project was honoured in the 2021 Garda Síochána Youth Awards presented earlier this month.

Exploring the impact of crime on people with disabilities and older people in the community, the project developed in the Tipperary Town area by the HSE/South East Community Healthcare’s disability services and Gardai features a publication entitled “Inside Out”.

A crime and disability awareness resource pack, “Inside Out” explores the impact of crime on people with disabilities and older people in the community.

In “Inside Out”, seven (anonymous) victims of crime shared their experiences with 12 Transition Year (TY) pupils from three secondary schools in Tipperary Town. 30 women serving time in custody at Limerick Prison also participated in the project, to offer an understanding to victims and to help steer young people away from crime.

Work on the project included submissions made from project participants during the lockdown. Tipperary County Council and Tipperary Age Friendly also backed the project and the TY students came from St. Ailbe’s, St. Anne’s and The Abbey schools in Tipperary Town.

The handbook also includes a contribution from solicitor Kate Fleming of the LawEd education group, explaining the Irish legal system and setting out a summary of crime awareness.

Speaking about the “Inside Out” project and after RTE celebrity Marty Morrissey had presented a delegation from the project with their Garda Youth Award (at a ceremony earlier this month in Portlaoise also addressed by boxer and Olympic gold medallist Kellie Harrington), Anne Bradshaw (HSE/South East Community Healthcare Disability Services Co-Ordinator, South Tipperary) said:

 “As a project, ‘Inside Out’ came about due to growing concerns around the amount of people with disabilities and older people that have been victims of crime. We worked with some of these victims and then engaged women prisoners in Limerick.”

 “Our handbook recounts and explores the impact of crime on its victim’s lives. The women in Limerick Prison were invited to explore the issues that led them to crime and to highlight its negative effect on their lives. The women scripted a play, not offered as an explanation for committing crime but to illustrate the often chaotic and stressful lives some of them lead.”

 “We hope that working on this project has helped all of those involved in a positive way and that ultimately it will help to bring about a safer environment for us all to live in.”

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