Estate managers are there to support all residents
Estate Manager Mary Keegan writes for The Echo about her job in the community, and gives us an insight into some of the aspects of her job – which sees her working on the ground in Fettercairn.
Mary’s position was in 2011 dropped from five days to two days after a 50 per cent cut by Government, with Fettercairn residents calling for these cuts to be reversed.
Mary is based in the Fettercairn Community Centre.
Mary Keegan working in the Fettercairn Community Centre garden
For over twenty five years the Estate Management has been working on the ground supporting the local community in all aspects of their lives, be it a time of happiness or sadness. We are there to help and support all the residents.
Our group works closely with South Dublin County Council housing department in developing their housing policies by supporting families when they move into the Fettercairn area by informing and introducing families to services available to them in their new community.
I facilitate weekly clinics on a Tuesday afternoon from 2.15pm to 3.15pm where members of the housing allocation support unit from SDCC and the Garda sit to meet residents in a confidential setting to discuss areas of concern they may have or have their passport stamped.
I am on the local policing forum and I’m always looking for extra resources for the community. The Estate Management Group was successful in negotiating with South Dublin County Council to carry out works in the community to make it a safer place to live.
As a result of this traffic calming measures that are already in place have been heightened and new railings have been installed to combat antisocial activity that had been affecting residents.
I constantly encourage residents to participate in their community by coming out and getting involved in clean-up days, painting walls, planting flower beds, cleaning up litter.
This is a great way to meet your neighbours and also combat social exclusion. I call monthly meetings for the Estate Management Committee to plan and discuss issues that need to be addressed in the month ahead.
We have representatives from Kilmartin, Kilcarrig and Drumcairn as well as the community Guards and the South Dublin County Councils Estate Managements worker.
I work very closely with St Vincent De Paul’s Society local conference to support families who would need extra help at particular times of the year i.e. Christmas, Easter, School Term, Communion, Confirmation and bereavements.
As the estate management worker I am very active in the community of Fettercairn. I have an extensive range of networks that I tap into for the benefit of the residents of the area.
In the next couple of weeks myself and the Estate Management group have secured a meeting with planners and architects to look at waste land that has now become an area of concern to the community.
I also run a senior citizens group every Wednesday in the community centre from 2pm to 4pm, the group have a light lunch and play bingo. This is a social outlet for them.
They are then aware of other services available in the community.
Our project has a strong history and track record in responding to the changing circumstances and emerging needs in the local community. We are very inclusive by nature.
I avail of an extensive range of other key local community and statutory organisations and I link with as many groups and residents as I can in the time that I am here as our funding for the project was cut by 50 per cent in 2011.