Out of the Blue - A Little Book of Inspiration
By Clann Resource Centre
What’s it all about, Clann and this book? Well, this is one of the Resource Centre’s ways of drawing on, drawing in, drawing out and sharing the resources we all have inside us(but maybe don’t realise we have), so that the community may have the use of them. So it’s a gathering of ideas and experiences that can be put to use rather than just exist somewhere in cloud cuckoo land.
“Clann of Welcomes” is my own name for the Resource Centre. You can dress it up in all its aims, names, purposes and functions and still not get the message of its welcome. Whether you are young or old, teenager, senior citizen, of any colour, particular persuasion, on your own or part of a family group, the welcome is the same. And there is something of interest in the range of Clann’s activities “for everyone in the audience”.
Twelve years ago I came to Oughterard from Dublin, knowing only one person – who, within the year, went to Dublin to live. I came to Clann via the Writers Group and found it was also a lovely way of finding friends and meeting people from the town itself and incomers from other countries and elsewhere in Ireland. In line with Clann’s equality principle, there is nothing at all elisist about it.
It doesn’t matter whether you’ve been scribbling for years or haven’t written anything since school essays, local writer, Pete Mullineaux brings out your gifts and helps you develop them, in a refreshingly non-judgemental way.
You could say Clann is as broad as it’s long, always with its ear to the ground for current issues and problems, and its nose sniffing out needs in the community and doing something about them. Never simply a talk-shop, having talked the talk it gets in there to become part of the action.
This book is an example of all that. Responding to the EU Year against Poverty and Social Exclusion, Clann has held workshops to tease out the issues and what we could do about them. Together with uachtarARTS, they have sourced funding for this initiative. Poverty in its widest sense can affect any one of us, and any of us can experience social exclusion or isolation in bigger or smaller doses in our lives. Drawing on people’s experiences, the hope is that this book will increase consciousness of the resources we all have within us, helping us to combat the doom and gloom of these challenging times, both for ourselves and for those around us. So, read and enjoy, and look out for the pot of gold – and don’t just stand there, dig it up!