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Lord Mayor announces four charities for his year in office

Date: 21 Jun 2024

Lord Mayor Councillor Micky Murray and his four chosen charities for 2024/25

Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Micky Murray, has announced his four official charities for the year ahead – DePaul, Inspire, Show Some Love Ltd and Oh Yeah Music Centre.

Each year, the First Citizen selects a number of charities to support during their year in office.

Meeting with representatives from each organisation at City Hall, Councillor Murray said his personal experience of supporting those coping with homelessness and addiction while working in the voluntary sector was a driving force behind his choices.

“Both DePaul and Inspire do fantastic work here in Belfast – most of which goes unseen,” he said.  “Whether it’s counselling, family support or accommodation, without them, many individuals and their families would be struggling even more.

“As Lord Mayor, I want to highlight the many valuable services they offer and give them the opportunity to put forward what they need to be able to do their job more effectively and continue to deliver this vital support.”

With inclusion and diversity also a key theme for the Lord Mayor’s term in office, Show Some Love Ltd was another natural choice for Councillor Murray.

The charity provides projects, events and spaces to bring people together and offer aid for those experiencing hardship. They work closely with refugees, asylum seekers, the LGBTQIA+ community and those in financial hardship and their projects include free packs of toiletries and underwear to those in need, a clothing bank and workshops focusing on textile recycling.

“This organisation has a real ethos of inclusion that runs through all their work, and are strongly focused on reducing loneliness and isolation and improving empathy and understanding of those who are marginalised,” said Councillor Murray.

“Their projects are so diverse and I love their resourcefulness and hustle to take unwanted items and use creativity to turn them into something current, useful and beautiful. By getting together to share skills, they’re also supporting better mental health and doing something good for the environment too.”

The final charity chosen by Lord Mayor, Oh Yeah Music Centre, also has a strong track record in bringing people together, this time through music.

The venue, based in the Cathedral Quarter, runs a wide range of outreach and education initiatives with young people, including work with schools and youth groups from across the city.

“I’ve always been impressed by the events and activities hosted by Oh Yeah and what they bring to our city,” said Councillor Murray. “They work hard to develop the next generation of talent, not just on the stage, but off it too – their programmes and workshops are focused on developing the skills young people need for the world of work and empowering them to be themselves, fulfil their potential, and follow their dreams.

“I’m excited to work with all four of my charities this year and provide them with a platform to showcase their work and demonstrate their value within our city.”

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