Minister congratulates graduates

Date published: 05 September 2016

Health Minister Michelle O’Neill has congratulated students from the Blackie River Community Group at their annual graduation ceremony.

Health Minister Michelle O'Neill
Health Minister Michelle O'Neill

The graduation ceremony took place tonight in the Long Gallery and the Minister presented graduates with Level 5 Diplomas in Children’s Care, Learning and Development (CCLD) and Level 3 Qualifications in Health and Social Care - Family Support.  Minister O’Neill said: “It is a pleasure to be here to celebrate the achievement of those obtaining their awards in children’s care learning and development, and in family support. 

“As Health Minister I want to ensure that our children and families are given the necessary support, assistance and encouragement to fully achieve their potential. All of us here today are aware of the increasingly complex and challenging issues that families face in the modern world.  Whether this is balancing work, home and family life, or dealing with financial and other social pressures. All of these challenges can leave people struggling to cope and in need of help.

“In our own lives I am sure that each of us will have availed of support from time to time. Whether this was from a family member or a friend, from statutory services or from the wider community – all of us need support at various points in our lives. Supporting families has never been more important.”

Blackie River Community Group has been an established group for more than 15 years and aims to empower local residents to take ownership of the local area in a positive manner by contributing towards the improvement of physical, social, economical and environmental outcomes. 

The Minister continued: “Your success as graduates will mean you will be at the front line in providing invaluable support to the children and families in your community. I would also like to take the opportunity to offer my congratulations to the staff at the Blackie River Community Group in identifying the need for a qualification for family support workers and developing and delivering a course to address this.

“This is innovation in action.  I am sure that other groups and organisations will be interested in your experiences and the learning you have developed as a result.”

Notes to editors: 

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