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Mayo County Council's Cathaoirleach's Awards 2022 - Now Open For Nominations

Date: 25-10-2022

Mayo County Council are inviting nominations for the second annual Cathaoirleach’s Awards.

These Awards recognise the unsung heroes that exist in every local community and who represent the best of Mayo; the individuals and groups that work quietly behind the scenes to make our communities stronger, more vibrant, and caring.

The Awards will recognise 12 winners across eight different categories from a broad spectrum of individuals and organisations from across the county.

The Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council, Cllr Seamus Weir, welcomed the opening of the nomination process for this year’s awards saying: “The Meitheal spirit has long existed inside the Mayo people and these awards acknowledge those who carry on that spirit today. So many people give up their time daily for the betterment of their community, not for personal reward, but for the betterment of everybody in their community – to make their locality a better place for all. These awards recognise those people. The local heroes, who put their shoulder to the wheel and do what they can for their community, place, and home. With several different categories open for nomination, I encourage everyone to take a moment to think about who they know in their community who deserves to be recognised for their efforts.”

The categories open for nomination for awards are:

  • Mayo Publication Award
  • Contribution to Local Heritage Award 
  • Contribution to Community Life Awards: 
  • Community Partnership Project Award 
  • Community Social Inclusion Project Award 
  • Community Tourism Award 
  • Environmental Awards: 
  • Green Community Group of the Year Award 
  • Burial Ground of Year Award 
  • Contribution to the Arts in Mayo Award 
  • Contribution to the Preservation and Promotion of the Irish Language Awards: 
  • Gaeltacht based Groups/Individuals Award and 
  • Non-Gaeltacht based Groups/Individuals Award 
  • Contribution to Diaspora Wellbeing/ Engagement Award 

All winners will be presented with a specially commissioned trophy, hand crafted in Mayo, at the Cathaoirleach’s Awards Presentation Evening in early 2023 and the winners will also receive a bursary to use for their community work. 

Nomination forms, and information and tips for applicants can be downloaded at

The closing date for nominations is Friday, January 13th, 2023.

About The Awards

Mayo Publication Award: (Individual and Group Nominees accepted).  This Award is for the best book on any aspect of life in Mayo.  Entries may include local heritage and history, biography and autobiography, folklore and traditions, natural history, sport, parish annuals and any other aspect of life in the county.  Publications from individuals, organisations and communities are accepted.  Fiction, poetry and drama entries are not eligible.  Is féidir iontrálacha a bheith í mBéarla nó í nGaeilge.  Entries may in Irish or in English. 

Entries must have been published between the 1st January 2022 and the 31st December 2022 and two copies of the nominated publication must be submitted with the Nomination Form for consideration.

Contribution to Local Heritage: (Group Nominees only).  This Award recognises the contribution by groups to the conservation, management, protection or promotion of Mayo’s natural, built or cultural heritage.  The award recognises fresh approaches and initiatives that link heritage to communities, promoting active engagement with heritage and its appreciation by the public.  The application of good heritage practice in managing sites, collections or objects.  Efforts/activities to ensure the survival of a heritage feature or structure and a contribution to heritage knowledge through research or data collection. Publications will not be considered for this award category.

Contribution to Community Life (2 Awards):

Community Partnership Project Award: (Group Nominees only).  This Award recognises community groups that show initiative, leadership and involvement in projects and activities that embody the spirit of genuine partnership and benefit the overall community.

Community Social Inclusion Project Award: (Group Nominees only).  Social Inclusion is about involving everyone within communities and this Award recognises those groups working to strengthen local communities, increase participation and promote social inclusion through their organisation, its activities and events.

Community Tourism Award: (Group Nominees only).  The Community Tourism Award seeks to recognise the efforts of voluntary groups or social enterprises in contributing to the development of outstanding experiences for visitors to County Mayo.  The Award will recognise any of the following initiatives that contribute to outstanding visitor experiences or extend the Céad Míle Fáilte in our towns or rural areas:  Collaborative initiatives between visitor destinations in the County.  Efforts that support a balanced calendar of annual events/activities.  New or innovative attractions, activities or festivals and collaboration with tourism and hospitality providers to ensure high-quality integrated visitor service.

Environmental Awards (2 Awards):

Green Community Group of the Year Award: (Group Nominees only).  This Award recognises the work that local voluntary groups have done to reduce emissions and improve their local environment.

Burial Ground of the Year Award: (Group Nominees only).  This category is open to all burial ground committees and other organisations who maintain burial grounds to a high standard and with care for the environment.  This Award recognises the exceptional efforts made to upkeep burial grounds as respectful and peaceful places while protecting and enhancing the environment.

Contribution to the Arts Award: (Group Nominees only).  This Award recognises the work that local voluntary groups do to encourage and promote the Arts in their community, including groups that take every opportunity to promote the Arts in their community, groups who have been involved in activities and initiatives that stimulate public interest in the Arts and who have been involved in activities and initiatives that promote knowledge, appreciation and practice of the Arts and who have been involved in activities and initiatives that assist in improving standards in the Arts.

Contribution to the Preservation and Promotion of the Irish Language (2 Awards):

These Awards recognise voluntary groups and individuals that take every opportunity to promote the Irish Language in their community, including: voluntary groups, individuals, school’s projects and initiatives, events, festivals ‘as Gaeilge’ that promote and increase the use of the Irish Language amongst their community, organising events be they big or small, that encourage people to speak the Irish Language from total beginners to advanced learners and fluent speakers that may not have the opportunity to use Irish on a daily basis and promote knowledge, appreciation and use of the Irish Language in their community.

Separate awards will be made to groups/individuals based: (i) In the Gaeltacht and (ii) outside the defined Gaeltacht.

Contribution to Diaspora Wellbeing/Engagement:  In general, this Award recognises an overseas group or individual who has contributed to furthering the cause and wellbeing of Mayo people or causes overseas.  The nominees for this Award would be sought from Mayo Associations, but any person or group can nominate.

An Cathaoirleach’s Special Recognition Award: (not open for public nominations).

To be presented by An Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council, Cllr Seamus Weir, this award recognises outstanding contributions to the ideals and spirit of Mayo at home or overseas.  This award allows Mayo County Council to acknowledge groups or individuals who do not fall within any of the other award categories.

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