Rose McKiernan: Recognition
Her Work to Help Southern Sudan
DON MCAULEY of the Calgary Irish Cultural Society presented The Celtic Connection award to a surprised Rose McKiernan.
By CATHOLINE BUTLER
VANCOUVER - Rose McKiernan of Calgary was the winner of the 2008 Celtic Connection Person of The Year Award.
Rose received the award in recognition for her dedicated and voluntary efforts to raise funds to build a village in Southern Sudan.
Cork born McKiernan emigrated to Calgary in 1982, along with her husband Peter and two daughters, Maeve and Orla.
Rose has always been involved in volunteer work. For almost 20 years she has worked to help new Canadian immigrants find work, accommodations, and clothing, and also to overcome their language difficulties.
Over two years ago, McKiernan undertook her biggest volunteer project to date. She is spearheading a fundraising project to help build a school and a hospital, and to dig a well to provide fresh drinking water for the people in a village in Southern Sudan. The name of her organization is the Southern Sudan Children's Literacy Foundation.
To date Rose has raised well over $40,000 for the project. The school has been built and the hospital will be next. Separate funds were raised to buy goats for the villagers but rebels came into the village and killed the goats.
McKiernan runs a day care facility in her home and the children and their parents have run garage and bake sales to raise funds. The Calgary Irish Cultural Society has also helped with a fund raiser at the Irish centre along with individual donations.
The leprechauns must have been at work here because since last May we have attempted to present this award to Rose.
She was finally cornered this past May at a pub night at the Irish Centre where vice-president Don McAuley made the presentation on behalf of The Celtic Connection to a surprised and amazingly unsuspecting Rose McKiernan.
Congratulations Rose, we wish to commend your dedication and unselfish efforts to help the less fortunate people in Southern Sudan.
If anyone would like to learn more or help support the Southern Sudan Children's Literacy Foundation, call Rose at (403) 247-4732.