#IamIrish - Support Diversity

£600 of £5,000 goal

Raised by 17 people in 23 months
My name is Lorraine Maher creator of #IamIrish .
I am an irish women who grew up in Carrick- on-Suir , Co . Tipperary . I currently live in London but love to  go home to visit my family as often as I can .

Growing up in Ireland  in the 60/70 wasn't always easy for me ,in my formative yrs I knew I was different but didn't fully understand howor why . By the time I reached 10 I was fully aware of my my hair grew differently and why my tan never  seemed to fade.

 I wasn't allowed to speak about it , everyone knew but it was forbidden , my blackness was taboo and so I leant to blend into the background and not make any complaints. 

The current  landscape in Ireland is a very different place but on many levels its still the same .In 2016 I still see people blending into the background . 

In the last year I have been feeling more and more complelled to do something to raise the profile of Irish people who happen to be mixed race .

There are many reasons but I will just share a couple of examples with you . On 6th June this yr I read in the Irish press that the Mayor of Ennis was going to Muhammad Ali's  funeral because he was one of our own  a proud feeling , the very next day on the 7th june I read in the same press 2 black South African students refused entry to a bar in Dublin I dont know how true this is but I felt it was time to be part of a change

Also over the last year I was at a meeting of the association of mixed race Irish in the London Irish centre and saw a beautiful exhibition but didn't see anyone that represented me . I looked on a few different official Irish websites and still didn't see anyone who looked like me and so the seed was sown the beginning of #I am Irish .

This is a really exciting new venture for me celebrating diversity. It is in some ways my response to Brexit and the raise in hate crime.

Delving into themes of dual heritage and identity, it’s a landmark project as the first time that the Black Irish experience has been directly represented in Black History Month here in the UK and in Ireland. 

 I hope this project is part of a solution to opening up dialogue in the hope to raise understanding  and to dispel the idea that if you are from a non- white community, you are automatically an immigrant. 

The project is a creative conversation mapping the roots, the lives and experiences of Irish people who happen to be mixed race. 

There’s been a fantastic response so far and interest in taking the project to other parts of England and over in Ireland.

I want to reach as many people as possible and hope that each person that joins the conversation becomes another tool to breaking down barriers that cause separation ,ignorance and division .

WE need to change how we speak about things we need to move forward together for a more united ireland . For a more Unite Britain for a more United World . I want to be part of a change but I need your help to do It.

#IamIrish - Is a project exploring Identity,Belonging,  Culture and Heritage .

We seek to dispel the idea that if you are from a non- white community, you are automatically an immigrant.

#IamIrish is for the best part self funded by me.
This project has gotten off the ground quickly with the help of friends, colleagues and supporters donating time and resources free of charge. 

There has been an overwhelming response so far and we hope to replicate the project with more artists and communities to explore Mixed identity elsewhere in the UK and Ireland.

We aim to raise the funds we need to take #IamIrish on tour but also crucially to pay the artists, facilitators and organisers for the time they dedicate to making these activities happen so that as many people as possible can get involved in the conversation . 

If this project strikes a chord, please dig deep and give us what you can. We welcome donations of any size to help this project to grow, fulfil its potential and make a really meaningful impact.


Who Am I :

My name is Lorraine Maher ,( Faissal) I am from Co.Tipperary Ireland currently living and working in London

I am an experienced Community Cultural Advisor and Arts Producer and work alongside some of the most vulnerable and hardest to reach communities to empower inspirational collaborations and experiences.

I have developed pioneering creative outreach programmes notably as Community Development Manager at the Roundhouse, the internationally acclaimed flagship for young people’s participation in the arts. I am currently director of Project 507, a social enterprise that aims to change the systemic conditions generating violence, and Theatre Education Manager for Clean Break, working with women affected by the criminal justice system.
With a passion for trauma informed practice, I have spent the best part of my career working within the Arts and Social Justice. with a special interest in work around identity and belonging, mental ill health, young people, homelessness, domestic violence and gang intervention. I am an active member of the Association of Mixed Race Irish.

In return :

All of those who support #IamIrish will receive a personal thank you from me .

larger gifts will be acknowledged on social media and depending on the size of the contribution you may even get to have your logo showcased on all our publicity materials .or have me come to speak at your event or deliver a workshop for a group of your choice .


a couple recent press links :

http://www.irishtimes.com/culture/growing-up-in-ireland-i-was-the-only-black-person-1.2807492

Link: http://www.thebritishblacklist.com/go-to-iamirish-black-history-month-london-irish-centre-from-6th-31st-october-2016/?utm_campaign=shareaholic&utm_medium=email_this&utm_source=email

This Black History Month at the London Irish Centre, #IamIrish presents a trilogy of events exploring Identity, Race, Culture and Heritage supported by the Association of Mixed Race Irish.

Contacts
email : iamblirish@gmail.com
Facebook - www.facebook.com/Iamblirish
twitter @iamblirish
and instagram @iamblirish

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£600 of £5,000 goal

Raised by 17 people in 23 months
Created September 25, 2016
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£50
Anonymous
21 months ago
SC
£10
Susan Campbell
21 months ago

Love and solidarity from a member of the Irish diaspora in Canada.

PD
£15
Paul Dowling
21 months ago

This project raises fundamental questions about identity and belonging. Great Project.

£20
Anonymous
22 months ago
£100
Anonymous
22 months ago
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