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Pride in Community leads to a better society – Ruane

21 November, 2008 - by Caitríona Ruane

Sinn Féin Education Minister, Caitríona Ruane, has spoken at the North Belfast Community Empowerment Partnership awards ceremony of the importance of community pride.

The Community Empowerment Partnership (CEP) annual awards ceremony recognises the achievements of local people that have participated in training and education courses organised by community groups in the greater New Lodge area.

Speaking at the event, the Minister said:

"Congratulations to everyone here on your success in completing your training courses. Voluntary activity is essential to help create a more inclusive society with confident capable individuals and empowered communities which are safe and friendly places to live.

"I believe in local people leading changes if they are to be meaningful and lasting. Initiatives such as this will support your efforts to transform your community.

"Of course, the foundations of community involvement are laid in childhood. Children soak up their environment and education in schools and homes gives focus to that process. Education is the means by which our children can escape the poverty net - children have two main educators in their lives, parents and teachers.

"I believe in the saying that it takes a village to raise a child. And what you have demonstrated here tonight gives me hope that the community in North Belfast is taking an active and involved interest in the education of the children and young people." ENDS

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