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Ray Community Group

Ray is a rural area and is situated in North Donegal between Ramelton, Rathmullan, Kerrykeel and Milford. The area is within the District Electoral Divisions of Glenalla.

The Ray Community Group (formally Ray Athletic Club) was formed in 1986 by a group of residents in the Ray and Glenalla area in response to a lack of recreational and sporting opportunities for young people. Through the formation of this group a community playing field was established with adjoining tennis court. This involved the local community coming together every Saturday for a full summer and physically clearing the field of rocks, draining the land, fencing the area and setting up football nets. The first football game was played in the summer of 1987. Monies for these ventures was collected through small local grants and fundraising activities – sponsored walks, bike runs, card games , football matches, community sports days and ‘take your pick’ nights.

A lot of young people then moved away from the area in the early 1990’s to find work and the club went quiet for a time. Then in 2000 and 2006 the Group were successful in obtaining grants from the National Lottery which allowed for the commencement and completion of dressing rooms and toilet facilities at Ray football pitch. The population of the Ray area has expanded over the last 10 years and there has been a dramatic increase in the number of young families living in the area. As a result the Ray Community Group decided to apply for funding for a Community Centre for the expanding area and in 2010 we were again successful in obtaining a grant from LEADER for €182,541 to enable us to complement the dressing rooms with a Community Centre. Work commenced on this project in Sept 2010 and is coming on well and is on course for completion by summer 2011.  

Vision - Helping you build your community

The Ray Community Centre will be a resource for all members of the community that will provide a space for community activities and services that will lead to a stronger and more inclusive society.

The new Community Centre will comprise of a large multipurpose hall, toilets, several storage areas, meeting rooms and kitchen facilities. It is also intended to increase the car parking facilities at the Community Centre to allow for easier access especially for the older and disabled members of the community. With a more appropriate sized building there will be an increase in the numbers that can be facilitated at classes and events. Also there will be an increase in the number of social events and courses that can be organised for all groups in the local and surrounding communities. Currently keep fit, line dancing, traditional dancing classes and cards are held weekly and a monthly quiz is also hosted.  

The Ray Community Group also host the following

  • St Bridget’s night cross making with the famous poundies
  • Several litter Clean Up days with the aid of materials from the Donegal County Council
  • Charity walk annually in support of the Irish Heart Foundation to celebrate World Heart Day and several fun walks to encourage exercise for all age groups including annual Toddle for Bernardo’s which raised €900 in 2010 for this very worthy cause.
  • Basic Life Support Courses twice yearly
  • Annual walk in support of Donegal Walking week.
  • Monthly family BBQ’s in the summer
  • Wednesday afternoon fun day for 2-12 year olds in July and August
  • Annual summer cup for 9 a side football in June and July
  • Annual Family Sports Day which has proven to be very successful with very large crowds in attendance each year.
  • Children’s Halloween Party which incorporates an art competition which 50 children participated in this year
  • Operation Christmas Child shoe box appeal for the disadvantaged in other countries
  • Children’s Christmas Party which last year saw 45 local children receive a gift from Santa Clause

The Ray Community Group plan to increase activities when the Community Centre is complete to include

Courses                    i.e.  First Aid, Basic Life Support, Arts and Crafts, Painting, Cookery, Basic 

                                 Computers and ECDL.

Social Events          i.e.  Senior Citizen Social activities, Bingo, Nativity Plays, Concerts, Youth                     

                                 Club, Funeral Teas, Birthday parties, Night at the Races, Take Your Pick

                                 nights

Sports and Social   i.e.  Indoor Football, Badminton, Basketball, Volleyball, 

                                  Darts, Pool, Line Dancing, Ceile Nights, Irish Dancing, Other Dancing

                                  Classes, Parent and Toddler group.

 

The building of the Community Centre is very ambitious but the committee know that it will benefit the local and surrounding communities for years to come by providing a meeting place and a social, educational and recreational facility for everyone. In order to complete the Community Centre the Ray Community Group need to raise €50,000 over the next 9 months and have several events planned which they hope you will support. Any of the events that we host we aim to provide people with value for money and a night out for their support.

As at the end of August 2011 €35,000 has been raised so far towards the Building Fund target of €50,000.