An incredible first half to 2016!!
Don't know where to start with this really. At the beginning of the year I could never have imagined the variety or amount of projects we've completed in the first half of the year. From the Wayfinders and website/video launch in Jan/Feb, to the Grand Parade mural (nosebleeds stepping outside our Medieval Cork base), Greening Coleman's Lane, and the various street light box murals, all the Reimaginites should really take a bow. In four short months we've built over 5000 followers on Facebook & Twitter and our new mailing list of volunteers will swell over 100. And we're not done yet....
When myself and Alasdair started two years ago we had a simple mission - let's just make Cork look a bit better, reveal its history a bit more, and have a bit of craic doing it! We wanted to try a few different things and see how the community responded. If it wasn't what they wanted there was no doubt we'd hear about it. Ultimately though we wanted to complete projects that included as many Corkonians as possible. Of course we hadn't the foggiest how to actually achieve this but we were eternal optimists.
This year alone we've worked with SHINE, The Guide Dogs, COPE, Cork Life Centre, Cork Educate Together, UCC Food Policy Council, Cork Social Good, The Green Party and Comyn Kelleher Tobin (who are very generously taking care of our not-for-profit registration). We've received generous donations/funding from Cork City Council, Sober Lane, Construction Industry Federation, Teamwork, Leaders of North Main Street, and great support from People's Republic of Cork, Scotts for Tools, Cork Foundation and countless well wishing emails. In my humble opinion this is how it works best. Cork people with no real hidden agenda but a love for the city, chipping in where they can, with whatever they can. We put up the challenge to people to 'Get Involved' and that's what they've done. Long may it continue.
History of Cork Mural - Cork Educate Together
There have been close to 20 projects completed in 6 months. Too many to list so I'm going to pick my two favourites from the year which I think encapsulate the three aims of all our projects - history, humour and heroes. The History of Cork mural involved over 200 pupils across a two week workshop. Leah Murphy co-ordinated the whole project expertly. Each pupil drew their own part of the mural with no help (I was one of the facilitators so there was little expertise on hand in fairness) and Leah weaved them together through its background. Its now a sight to behold in what was once a dingy car park. A big thanks to Cork Foundation & Construction Industry Federation for assistance with installing the mural also.
Street Light Box Murals
These themed boxes are turning previous eyesores into landmarks that tourists are stopping and taking snaps of. I never thought I'd see my brother's generation all-time go to slang word 'Mint' (usually followed by 'Bah') on the side of a street light box but what do I know. The ol Jouster himself, Garreth Joyce, has become the only man in town for these boxes as he also completed a raft for Gael Taca and PROC. They tick Heroes, History, and Humour all in one. Long may they reign!!