Date Released: 12 December 2016
President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins, has written the introduction to a new charity calendar which celebrates the story of the Irish Citizen Army (ICA) and its commemoration during the centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising.
The calendar, which will be launched in Liberty Hall, Dublin 1, tomorrow (Tuesday, 13th December) at 5.30 p.m., features historic images of the Irish Citizen Army, alongside photographs from this year of the ICA Re-enactment Group. Also included are images of famous members of the organisation, among them Easter Rising leaders James Connolly, Countess Markievicz and Michael Mallin as well as playwright Sean O’Casey.
In his introduction to the calendar, President Higgins, said: “The vision of the women and men of the Irish Citizen Army; of a people free from want, free from impoverishment and free from exploitation remains a wellspring of inspiration for us as we seek to respond to the situation of too many workers who, in Ireland today, earn a wage that guarantees neither a life free from poverty, nor access to decent housing, adequate childcare and health services.”
During 2016, members of the Prison Officers Association and SIPTU came together to form the ICA Re-enactment Group to honour the over 220 members of the Irish Citizen Army who fought alongside the Irish Volunteers in the 1916 Rising. Fitted out in period uniforms and carrying authentic rifles the re-enactment group visited schools and marched in commemorations.
Irish Citizen Army Re-enactment Group member, Orlagh Fawl, said: “The calendar provides you with a real sense of the story of the men, women and young people who joined the Irish Citizen Army because they wanted to see not only an independent but also more equal Ireland.”
She added: “It was particularly fitting that the ICA Re-enactment Group received generous funding for its uniforms from the Dublin Port Company, as many of the original Irish Citizen Army members worked on the docks.”
Proceeds from the sale of the calendar will go towards two charities, Focus Ireland, which works with people who are homeless or are at risk of losing their homes, and Make-A-Wish, an organisation which helps make real the wishes of children living with life-threatening medical conditions.
The calendar costs €5 and is available to purchase in Focus Ireland shops, from Liberty Hall in Dublin and online HERE.