Katie Troy from Blueball, representing Tullamore Court Hotel; Yvonne Hutchinson, People and Culture Manager, Tullamore Court Hotel: Gerard O'Carroll, President Down Syndrome Ireland: Deirdre Buckley, Director of People and Culture with the iNUA Collection of hotels; Aoife Gaffney, Head of Employment with Down Syndrome Ireland and Aoibhe Finn from Ashley Court, Tullamore, representing Tullamore Court Hotel.

Local hotel staff represent Offaly at cheque presentation

Two local staff members from the Tullamore Court Hotel were among a number of Down Syndrome Ireland (DSI) members selected to attend a very special event in Dublin last week at which a cheque for €90,000 was handed over to the organisation by their charity partners, the iNUA Collection.

Aoibhe Finn, daughter of Pat and Noreen Finn from Ashley Court in Tullamore, and Katie Troy, daughter of Dermot and Catherine from Blueball, were both representing the Tullamore Court Hotel where they are employed under the Down Syndrome Ireland Employment Programme.

The special presentation ceremony, which took place on Thursday last at the Dublin ONE Hotel, was also attended by family members of the selected representatives from DSI, which saw ten of the 15 Down Syndrome Ireland colleagues from across the iNUA Collection's 12 hotels take part in the event.

Tullamore Court Hotel is part of the The iNUA Collection, which selected Down Syndrome Ireland as their charity partner in 2019 and is proud to have raised over €90,000 for DSI to date, due entirely to the generosity of colleagues, hotel guests, and the support of the Down Syndrome Ireland team.

Yvonne Hutchinson, People and Culture Manager at the Tullamore Court Hotel said they were "honoured and privileged" to be associated with Down Syndrome Ireland and to have both Katie Troy and Aoibhe Finn working as food and beverage assistants. "Both of them have been on the staff team for a number of years and they are valued members of the team here in Tullamore Court Hotel. They are motivated and committed to the hotel and their engagement with guests and team members is exceptional."

Ms. Hutchinson strongly encouraged other employers to become involved in the Down Syndrowm Ireland employment programme during her speech.

Aoibhe Finn's mother, Noreen, described the DSI employment programme as being "invaluable" and said she was delighted that her daughter is employed in the Tullamore Court Hotel as part of the programme. "The social aspect to Aoibhe being employed is unbelievable and she is extremely happy because she is working there" said Noreen, who added that Aoibhe "absolutely loves her job and others can see what those with Down Syndrome can do." She also told the audience in the Dublin ONE Hotel that the number of positive comments she has received regarding Aoibhe working in the hotel has been "truly remarkable and the programme has facilitated that.’"

Sean O’Driscoll, CEO of the iNUA Collection promised the groups commitment to continuing the €5 per €100 contribution to DSI for all vouchers sold across its hotels as well as introducing the ‘Clean the Planet, Not my Room’ campaign, where a €1 per room donation is made to DSI on behalf of guests.

The iNUA Collection organise and take part in a variety of initiatives across the group to achieve fundraising targets, raise awareness and engage with colleagues and also with guests. These range from one-off events in individual hotels such as sponsored charity runs/walks, non-uniform days and afternoon teas.