Alex’s chocolate

One of the most memorable days of the campaign so far. Our morning canvass was in Barrow Street at Grand Canal Dock DART. We got there early, wondering where the spring weather had gone! On then to the Alex hotel for a hustings session organised jointly by Educate Together and the Children’s Rights Alliance. I have long admired both organisations. Parents, activists and children were assembled to quiz the candidates on subjects such as climate change, ethical education and voting rights for sixteen year olds.

Of all the many conversations, meetings, and engagements I’ve had in these weeks of campaigning none has had more impact than the testimonies of people at a meeting hosted by Family Carers Ireland, facilitated by John Masterson. Breda Daly has cared for her sister for over 30 years. Her story was powerful: “If I got a bit more respite” she said, “I think things would be a lot better for her and for me”. She was followed by Teresa McNally who told a remarkable story of caring for several family members over many years, including her mother, her husband and her son. Teresa said that “her positive attitude and tai chi” had gotten her through.

This is one of the richest countries in the world. It is indefensible that the government will not prioritise the needs of carers. Their demands are modest, and worthy of our full support.

We visited Nutgrove shopping centre and Stillorgan shopping centre in the afternoon, finishing up in Knocklyon this evening with Paddy Cosgrave.

Moment of the day: being presented with a bar of  “Alex’s chocolate” by the nice man who went back in to Nutgrove to purchase it specially.

It was an “Alex” kinda of day!