08/05/2014 Minister Deenihan thanks schools across the country holding a minute’s silence in tribute to those who suffered loss during the Great Famine

Today (8th May 2014), Jimmy Deenihan T.D., Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and Chair of the National Famine Commemoration Committee thanked all the schools around the country who plan to hold one minute’s silent reflection tomorrow, Friday, 9th May 2014.  This will be carried out as a gesture of respect and acknowledgement of those who died or suffered loss in the Great Famine.

Students in all primary and secondary schools have been asked to pause for one minute at noon on Friday May 9th 2014 to reflect on the loss of the Great Famine and contemplate famine and hunger worldwide.

Minister Deenihan said: “Each year we have seen remarkable support from Schools for this initiative.  We are very grateful for their support and for their continued willingness to show respect and remembrance for all those who suffered during the famine.  The participation of our younger generations ensures our own history is remembered and it also raises awareness of current hunger issues around the world.  The devastation caused by the famine in Ireland has shaped our attitude to famine experienced in the world today and Ireland remains deeply committed to providing humanitarian relief to those in need”.

The 2014 National Famine Commemoration is being held on Sunday, 11th May in Strokestown, Co. Roscommon and members of the public are invited to attend the ceremony, which includes a formal state ceremony as well as a community element.  The International Commemoration of the Great Irish Famine will take place in New Orleans in November 2014.

A full ten-day programme of events leading up to the National Famine Commemoration began in Strokestown on Friday 2nd May 2014 and will continue until May 11th, culminating in the formal state ceremony.  This includes a series of lectures, musical pieces, walks, bus tours, theatre, music, exhibitions and local commemoration ceremonies, all of which are free of charge.

Further information regarding the local programme of events and the National Famine Commemoration 2014 can be found on the following websites:





Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, 23 Kildare Street, Dublin , D02 TD30. Tel: 01 631 3800 / LoCall: 1890 383 000

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