Minister Joe O’Brien Launches Africa Day Celebrations in Lusk and Balbriggan

26th May, 2023

Today, Minister Joe O’Brien attended Africa Day Celebrations at Lusk Community Cultural Centre with the support of Irish Aid and Fingal County Council and at The Irish Institute of Music & Song in Balbriggan to mark the official launch of the Afro-Irish Event.


Speaking at the launch, Joe O’Brien TD said:


“Fingal is especially blessed with communities with strong African heritage and culture and today is an opportunity to celebrate that locally across the county.


“Today is an important day for countries across the globe to come together to celebrate both the African Continent’s solidarity and unity and the African Diaspora.


“The ties between Ireland and Africa reach far back and continue to grow and develop. Ireland’s Strategy for Africa to 2025 sets out a vision to ‘deepen and strengthen Ireland’s political, economic and cultural relationships with Africa, contributing to peace, prosperity and sustainable development.


“For a long time, people of African Descent have called Ireland home. Africa Day is being celebrated at events throughout the country today, and it has been for many years.


“Ireland is a signatory of the DDPA and is committed to fulfilling its obligation to combat racism and discrimination in all its forms. 


“In March of this year, I launched the National Action Plan against Racism; the plan is informed by the DDPA and aligned to Ireland’s commitment to human rights, democracy, and the rule of law. The plan acknowledges the intersectionality between racism and all other forms of oppression, and its implementation will further our aim to combat racism and realise a truly equal and inclusive society.  


I join you in celebrating Africa Day, in celebrating African achievements and in celebrating the diversity and richness of African culture and heritage.”


The Minister also spoke of a funding call to support the Celebration of the International Decade. Under this call €150,000 has been made available, with up to a maximum of €5,000 for each successful proposal, for events to mark the Decade.


Proposals are sought for events that raise awareness of obstacles to the equal enjoyment of all human rights, that promote greater knowledge and awareness of the culture, history and heritage of People of African Descent, and events that bring communities together to celebrate the enrichment of Irish society by People of African Descent.