Hibernians will follow a St. Patrick week of key meetings with Irish and British political leaders in Washington and New York, by presenting more than $160,000 dollars in Freedom for all Ireland (FFAI) grants this Saturday, April 1st. Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH) National President Danny O’Connell will join FFAI Chair Martin Galvin, to present these awards during a live webinar broadcast from the Houben Centre, Holy Cross Church in Belfast, where 19 successful grant applicants will talk about their work and the importance of American help, to Hibernians across the United States. The webinar broadcast will begin at 10 a.m. Eastern Time and 3 p.m. in Ireland.
Each year the Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH) makes a special Christmas Appeal to raise funds for grants to groups working for freedom for all Ireland. This year the AOH set a new record, with members contributing more than $160,000.
These presentations follow a St. Patrick’s Day week, in which the AOH hosted Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, and voiced crucial concerns about the pending British amnesty bill in meetings with Irish and British officials and northern party leaders.
Saturday’s broadcast will come from the grounds of Holy Cross Church, where 20 years ago Catholic girls at were subjected to a vicious campaign of sectarian abuse on their way to attend the primary school. The Houben Centre has been a major recipient of FFAI Christmas Appeal support.
Among this year’s other successful grant applicants are leading campaigners for legacy truth, including Relatives for Justice, the Witness Project, Ballymurphy Massacre Campaign, and the Bloody Sunday Trust.The EALU center was awarded a grant for its work with Republican ex-political prisoners in Tyrone and Green Cross for its assistance to families bereaved in the conflict.
Belfast National Graves and Tyrone National Graves will receive grants for preserving the memorials and graves of Irish patriots. A heritage grant was awarded to the St. Patrick Centre
The Greater New Lodge Commemoration Committee, and the O’Neill-Allsopp Memorial Band are grant recipients along with cross-community groups, including Bridges Beyond Boxing, Omagh Choir, and Omagh Thunder Basketball.
First time applicant Ireland’s Future, will receive a grant to support its work in securing an all-Ireland vote on Irish reunification, along with the Martin McGuinness Foundation.
The Bogside Artists, have also been awarded a grant for their work in creating and maintain historic political wall murals in Derry.
The AOH invites all Irish American groups or anyone interested in hearing about the remarkable work being done for Freedom for all Ireland by these grant winners to tune in Saturday at 10 a.m. Eastern time, 3pm Irish time, or watch at any time on YouTube.
Register to join the AOH on Zoom:
Or watch on YouTube Live:
Contributed by Martin Galvin, AOH National FFAI Chairman