Tralee Women’s Support Group calls on council to provide suitable building

A Tralee-based women’s support group is asking Kerry County Council to provide them with new accommodation.

Phoenix Women’s Center Secretary Sheila Martin addressed Tralee Borough Councilors at their recent meeting.

She said the organization’s current setup, which involves renting two buildings, prevents her from hosting workshops or activities.

The appeal comes ahead of the opening of a women’s shed tomorrow morning, from which the center will operate one day a week.

The Phoenix Women’s Center of Tralee is a support group established in 2018 to engage, educate and empower women in Kerry.

In a deputation to Tralee Borough Councilors yesterday, Secretary Sheila Martin said the organization was currently renting its current office at Market Place in the town.

The center will also lease Pipers Band Hall downtown one day a week, from which they will operate their new women’s shed.

It opens for the first time tomorrow morning at 10:30 a.m.

However, the Phoenix Women’s Center wishes to expand its range of services and activities from a central facility that they do not have to rent.

Sheila Martin asked the council, through the Tralee MD office, if they could provide a suitable building to offer more workshops and programs.

She also said it was important for women to have a central place to come to, open daily, where they know they will not be judged and where they can learn, engage and gain confidence.

All councilors spoke very positively of the work being done by the centre, but Fine Gael councilor Jim Finucane said finding a building would be the challenge.

Sheila Martin inquired about using a section of the Island of Geese site.

Independent Councilor Sam Locke responded that although part of the site is set aside for community space, an alternative would be preferable as it would not be in use for a few years.

Tralee Municipal District Manager Niamh O’Sullivan said she could not commit to anything at the meeting but said the office would work closely with the center to identify a building.

Rita O’Sullivan Crean of the Phoenix Women’s Center, encourages women to attend the opening of her new shed tomorrow morning.

Virginia S. Braud