Deputy Michael Ring TD was on hand in Balla recently to unveil a number of local projects that were completed in the local area.
The projects included: (1 ) new planting in Balla Town Park woodlands and the No Name Club eco project; (2 ) unveiling of communications boards at Balla playground; (3 ) turning the sod on the sensory park; and (4 ) restoration works at the old Church of Ireland.
In relation to the unveiling of new planting in Balla Town Park woodlands and No Name Club eco project, Deputy Ring said: "The Balla No Name Club have done fantastic work on an eco project, in conjunction with town parks. They planted 150 trees and they put woodland animals in the area for children." Deputy Ring acknowledged the work carried out on this project by the chairman of the No Name Club, Brendan Conwell, with the other volunteers, and added: "Balla Town Parks is a huge resource to the local community with more walks being added every year."
In regards to new communications board at Balla playground, following a motion by Cllr Donna Sheridan, Balla playground was chosen as the first location for the installation of communication boards. These boards will support children with communication differences, and in particular children who are non-verbal. Special thanks was also given to Amanda McGuinness, board member of AsIAm - Ireland's National Autism Charity, who came up with this concept and assisted in the design of the boards.
The sod was turned on the proposed sensory garden that will promote biodiversity in Balla. The area is situated beside the children’s play area which has already been planted with trees. Special mention was given to Geraldine Durkan, secretary of Tidy Towns, for her input into this proposal.
Permission was sought by local community members from the Church of Ireland, to tidy up the area around the old Church of Ireland property. Forty trailers of rubbish were removed along with overgrown shrubs and weeds. Cllr Donna Sheridan provided funding for LED lights and the front wall.
Deputy Ring said: "Balla is an ideal example of how community organisations work together for the betterment of their area. The works carried out in Balla are significant and are a shining example to other communities. I would like to particularly pay tribute to Cllr Donna Sheridan who liaised with the community groups in Balla and put a lot of work into these projects."