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irish cultural center mcclelland library

From the Desk of the President of the Irish Cultural and
Learning Foundation

Ní neart go cur le chéile
“There is no strength without unity”
– Michael D. Higgins, President of Ireland

June 22nd 2020

To ICLF members, volunteers, affiliates, staff, community and board,

Per the City of Phoenix direction and ICLF board input we will remain closed to the public through the months of June-July-August. Please prioritize staying safe and healthy and practice social distancing. We published a statement on Monday June 1st to reiterate our Mission and insupport of people regardless of their unique identity.

The drive we hosted for the Navajo Nation was a tremendous success. Many thanks to Ciara and Jason for their leadership and to all the board, staff and volunteers that made it happen. Here is the summary we created “With the help of 80 volunteers the Arizona Irish community hosted donation drives over two weekends in May to help the Navajo Nation who have been significantly impacted by COVID-19. This was to pay it forward for the kindness demonstrated by the Choctaw Tribe during the Great Irish Famine. 5000 items were individually wiped down and stored in the Great Hall. Urgent items, including face shields from Intel Makers, were flown by a donated air flight to Window Rock and the remaining items were transported in two 50ft trailers by the AZ National Guard.” We also aligned our initiatives to the official (vs. gofundme) donation site. We were honored to receive a Thank You letter from the President of the Navajo Nation.

All staff are continuing to Work From Home during the closure. Training and task hand-off is 90% complete with remaining items focused on onsite activity when we re-open. The Events team have had much success with our virtual offerings using Facebook Live and Zoom including Bloomsday, Coffee and Happy Hour and Library from Home. They did an amazing job on our virtual Bloomsday and I hope you got a chance to participate in some of the activities we offered.

Our $20 membership coupon 2020NewMember is still available online during the closure.
We also launched a test of our Donation Drive process in NEON during Bloomsday and we met our $1000 goal – THANK YOU!

Be respectful of the past, realistic about the present and optimistic about the future.

On behalf of the staff and Board of Trustees, I send our feelings of unity and love and pray for the safety
and wellbeing of all Arizonans.

Go raibh míle maith agaibh,

Leslie Thompson
President of the Irish Cultural and Learning Foundation
June 22, 2020