Park Run Facebook and Twitter LinkThis year for World Cancer Day the National Cancer Control Programme and parkrun are partnering to encourage everyone to “Bring a friend to parkrun” on Saturday, 3rd February to raise awareness of the importance of exercise in preventing cancer.

This year for World Cancer Day we are focusing on obesity and physical activity. We aim to raise awareness that we all have the power to reduce our risk of getting cancer. 

In Ireland it is estimated that approximately 800 new cases of cancer and 300 deaths from cancer each year are due to obesity. However, approximately 30-40% of cancers could be prevented through lifestyle changes. For example, a woman who exercises for two hours every week reduces her risk of breast cancer by 5%. For bowel cancer there is an average risk reduction of 20% with high versus low levels of exercise. 

SpeakOver the past 10 years, the annual SPEAK report has provided a summary evaluation of the work carried out by

Sport Ireland’s national network of Local Sports Partnerships. We are delighted to present the 2016 SPEAK report

as it continues to highlight the innovative and progressive opportunities that assist people to get more active

throughout Ireland.

There is a diverse range of sport and physical activity opportunities available through Local Sports Partnerships.

In 2016, 291,947 people increased their physical activity levels by taking part in programmes supported by the Local Sports Partnerships.

View the full report here...

Dormant Accounts FundMinster of State for Tourism and Sport Brendan Griffin TD today announced €2.9m worth of funding for sport and physical activity projects through the Dormant Accounts Fund. The investment of €2.9 million is being allocated to National Physical Activity Plan measures for disadvantaged communities and will be administered by Sport Ireland.

Speaking at the announcement in Killarney today, Minister Griffin said: "The funding of €2.9m being announced today will support the delivery of sport and physical activity initiatives across the country under the National Physical Activity Plan.

Date announced by the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs for the commencement of all remaining provisions of the Children First Act 2015

Statement by Dr. Katherine Zappone TD, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs

Monday 2nd October 2017 Minister Katherine Zappone T.D., Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, announced that following almost two years of preparations all remaining provisions of the Children First Act 2015 will be commenced on 11th December 2017.  These include the provisions in relation to mandatory reporting of child abuse and in relation to placing a legal obligation on organisations providing services to children to prepare and publish a Child Safeguarding Statement.

Minister Zappone was speaking at the launch of Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children [2017] which revises and replaces the 2011 edition of the Children First Guidance. The revised Guidance includes reference to the provisions of the Children First Act and is available on the website of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs at At the same launch, Tusla published an accompanying suite of Children First resource documents for those individuals and organisations who will acquire legal obligations under the Children First Act 2015.  Tusla also launched a comprehensive 90 minute basic Children First training programme, to be universally available on line, free of charge. The Tusla suite of Children First resource materials and information on access to the e-learning module is available at

The revised Children First guidance and the Tusla Children First resources are being launched in anticipation of the full commencement of the Act on 11th December, in order to allow for time for preparations by those individuals and organisations who will acquire legal obligations under the Children First Act 2015 from 11th December.  The Minister stated: “By announcing a date of full commencement of all remaining provisions of the Children First Act 2015 on 11th December, I am fulfilling a longstanding Government commitment in relation to mandatory reporting of child abuse.”  She added: “While I do not underestimate the scale of the challenge for individuals and organisations to comply with their responsibilities under the Children First Act, I believe our children deserve no less. 

The comprehensive range of resources being launched today, are intended to help them in their preparations to discharge these responsibilities”. The Minister acknowledged and commended all those who work so hard to make sure that every child they interact with is cared for, supported and protected.  She said “Practitioners in the professional and voluntary sectors, medical professionals, Gardai, youth workers, teachers, and coaches all over Ireland have already adopted and applied best practice in child protection. These people already implement Children First in full and understand their duty to keep children safe.”

“We must continually do our utmost to protect children and young people from harm and assist them in achieving their full potential and I want to encourage and support people who work with children to continue to do so. I hope that families, communities and those who work with children will find the revised Children First Guidance a practical and supportive reference resource, together with the resource documents now being made available by Tusla”.


Note for Editors

The primary purpose of the Children First Act 2015 is to put key elements of Children First Guidance on a statutory basis.  A number of provisions of the Act have been commenced to date on a phased basis. These include the abolition of the common law defence of reasonable chastisement for parents or those acting in loco parentis in relation to corporal punishment and the establishment of the Children First inter-Departmental Implementation Group on a statutory basis.

On commencement on 11 December 2017 the remaining provisions will impose statutory obligations on key professionals to report child protection concerns over a certain threshold to Tusla and on providers of relevant services to children to carry out a comprehensive risk assessment of their services and develop Child Safeguarding Statements.  The obligations on mandated reporters will take effect immediately on the date of commencement, i.e. 11th December, while organisations will have 3 months from that date to comply with their obligations in relation to publishing a Child Safeguarding Statement. Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children was first published in 1999 and was revised and updated a number of times, most recently in 2011. The principles and substance of this document (2017) are unchanged from the earlier editions. The guidance is intended to assist people in recognising child abuse and neglect, and in reporting reasonable concerns to Tusla. The guidance has been updated to reflect the provisions of the Children First Act 2015 and it includes specific information for those persons and organisations who will acquire legal obligations under the legislation when it is fully commenced on 11 December 2017.

The Guidance also outlines the roles of the main statutory bodies involved in child welfare and protection: Tusla - Child and Family Agency, and An Garda Síochána. It contains details of how to report a concern about a child and what happens once the report is received by Tusla. The revised Guidance is just one of the resources available to assist with child protection. A free, online child welfare and protection e-learning programme has been prepared by Tusla and is now available for everyone, free of charge. This, and a number of additional child protection and safeguarding information resources, can be found on the Tusla website, Taken together, the Children First Act, the Criminal Justice (Withholding of Information on Offences Against Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012 and the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012-2016, represent a significant legislative framework to promote the safety and protection of children.

Parents Week of SportAll of us within sport know that a parent/carer is essential to a child’s life-long involvement and enjoyment in sport. Parents in Sport Week is an initiative running from the 2nd to the 8th October 2017 and will dovetail into already existing work staff/volunteers are engaged with. It’s an initiative to support your current safeguarding programme. We hope to use this week to highlight the valuable role parents fulfil, and the positive influence they have in supporting their child’s participation in sport.

Parents play a pivotal role in sport and young people depend on their support and encouragement.

Further information contact; Bernie Priestley at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: (01) 8608800 or Paul Stephenson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 028 90 351135

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