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SEND THEM SHOE-BOXES! The New York Irish Center Responds...and Responds Again...and Again.

If you are an individual, fill your SHOE-BOXES and BOOT-BOXES with good things and bring them to the New York Irish Center. If you are a corporation, call Paul Finnegan at 718-482-6943 and tell him you want to sponsor some Shoe-Boxes and Boot-Boxes.

Paul Finnegan, Executive Director, The Irish Center of New York. Shown with Relief for Rockaway victims of Hurricane Sandy 11/15/2012


Volunteers at the New York Irish Center with food and other relief goods collected for victims of Hurricane Sandy.


What you can put in a SHOE-BOX





Long Island City, NY December 7, 2012 -

The volunteers at The New York Irish Center, under Paul Finnegan's leadership, have set a high bar of compassion for all of us to follow.

Six weeks ago, The New York Irish Center mobilized immediately after Hurricane Sandy, to gather food and clothing to bring to disaster victims.  It hasn't stopped for a second. Day after day, the Irish Center has been helping. Collecting good... and then delivering and distributing.

All told the New York Irish Center sent TEN large truckloads, concentrating deliveries to St. Frances De Sales (Beach 129th Street), and St. Camillus (98th St) in the Rockaways.  About half of the trucks were 30 ft. The other half were 15ft. Finnegan says "Bear in mind we had to take on tasks here that a week before were beyond our wildest imagination.... it was hard work hauling collecting and hauling things around."  

Finnegan has great compliments for all of the volunteers, many of whom are key board members, and are intensely dedicated. He praised the work and commitment of Greg McIntyre of the Padded Wagon trucking company, who supplied and often drove the trucks.

The latest commitment is a CHRISTMAS SHOE-BOX APPEAL!

As part of the Irish day of action Sandy relief effort, The New York Irish Center is organizing a Christmas Shoe Box Appeal to help bring a little holiday cheer this year to the Children of Rockaway.

The Christmas Shoe box Appeal is an ordinary idea that has an extraordinary outcome. It is carried out in Ireland every year by the inspirational Irish Organization Team-Hope. Irish school Children in Ireland pack and wrap and shoe box with little pr
esents, and drop them off at a collection point and they are delivered to 81,000 Children in the poorest, war and poverty stricken countries in Africa and Eastern Europe.

The Irish Day of Action Committee wants to emulate a version of this initiative for the children of Rockaway.

The New York Irish Center encourages everyone to take part, it's a worthy cause, very easy and a lot of fun making up your every own little shoe-box gift.

One of the best aspects of our Shoe Box Appeal is it gives Children the opportunity help Children. Another lovely aspect is putting together the shoe boxes is a very family orientated experience, and The shoe box appeal's recommended contents are economically-friendly to enable the maximum number of people to take part. We have 2 drop off points in Queens 2 in the Bronx and 4 in Manhattan.

The New York Irish Center has a team in Rockaway gathering vital statistics and organizing distribution points for Saturday the 15th the next Irish Day of Action.

The Emerald Isle Irish Center both locations, the Aisling Irish Center, and the New York Irish Center are all drop off points

Our partners and friends, The Irish Arts Center, and The Irish Repertory Theatre are all taking part by being collection points as well.

Two of our Partners, The Mad Hatter Saloon and Off the Rails Bar, are organizing events on Thursday the 13th of December inviting people to come along for a night of giving. People are asked to come along and donate a Shoe-box gift for a child, and get huge discounts off your check.

Jane McCarter of the New York Irish Center says "While it won't rebuild their community, hopefully our shoe boxes will give the community of Rockaway renewed sense of hope and a welcome break from the harsh reality of what the people of rockaway are having to deal with."

The New York Irish Center has provided OurLIC with their official poster and guidelines that explain exactly what
to do and how to take part.  We are presenting this with this article.

Please do not hesitate and contact me directly if you would like to more information or talk about any aspect of this program in more detail.

Let's help the New York Irish Center with every aspect of the overall Irish Day of Action Efforts,

What's Irish about good deeds?

The Irish have many stereotypes applied to them.  One, that is undersung ,is their charitable instincts. Stemming from the Great Hunger of 1847, and is evident today in the per capita amounts given to efforts to relieve natural disasters... especially anything to do with famine or starvation. The Irish have been coming to the rescue.

Profile of Paul Finnegan

Paul Finnegan considers himself a product of the Irish Diaspora. 

He was raised in Galway City in Ireland from the age of about three weeks. The first fortnight of his life was spent in Phoenix, Arizona, where his father found work in the mid-sixties and where Paul and his older brothers were born.  His older sister was born in Chicago.  His mother hailed from Co. Kilkenny and his father from Galway. Paul's mother is gone, RIP, but Paul’s father is still living in Galway City and is 84.

Growing up in Galway, Paul never thought he would have to leave but with a terrible recession in Ireland in the mid-80s Paul found himself in New York where he has happily been ever since. In 1993, while working as a teacher in the city's public school system, Paul co-authored a publication for Emerald Isle Immigration Center titled Education: In Pursuit of the American Dream.  From 1994 to 1998 he was Executive Director at Emerald Isle Immigration Center (EIIC), along with being the original coordinating director of the Coalition of Irish Immigration Centers. After leaving EIIC, Paul spent over a decade in the world of B2B information systems and Internet marketing and branding, primarily within the foodservice industry.  In recent years, he has served as an Executive Committee member and Treasurer at EIIC.  In June 2009 he took over at the New York Irish Center in Long Island City, and is very excited to be working with a committed Board and its vibrant membership, as the NYIC continues to evolve.

Along the way, Paul obtained a Masters in Information Systems from Baruch College in Manhattan, to build on his Bachelor's degree in Engineering from University College Galway (NUI Galway).  He is married to Rosa, native of the Dominican Republic, with whom he has a son Kevin, 12, and a daughter Sara, 7.  Paul and his young family live in Glendale Queens.  Kevin and Sara attends St. Pancras parochial school in Glendale.


OurLIC Video Conversation: Paul Finnegan; Executive Director, The New York Irish Center

Finnegan discusses "The Greatest Generation"

The very first thing you need to know about the New York Irish Center is that it is a wonderful place that serves the Irish community in ALL FIVE BOROUGHS.

The very second thing you need to know is that Ireland is a country of "Counties", and the hearts of all Irish folk start with their community in IRELAND.

No one understands, explains, or represents this better than Paul Finnegan.  First, he is a truly honorable and proud Irishman who is Executive Director of an organization that was established to be a center for people who are away from their communities in Ireland. Second, he is an articulate spokeman for the Irish Center and for the Long Island City community in which he has a leadership role.

Go to Full OurLIC Article, Video and Photos for OurLIC Video Conversation: Paul Finnegan; Executive Director, The New York Irish Center

For questions, comments, and feedback please use our Optin Form or send an email about OurLIC OurLIC Video Conversation: Paul Finnegan; Executive Director, The New York Irish Center to Arthur@CityEntree.com

Paul Finnegan, Executive Director, The Irish Center of New York. Shown with Relief for Rockaway victims of Hurricane Sandy 11/15/2012
Volunteers at the New York Irish Center with food and other relief goods collected for victims of Hurricane Sandy.
What you can put in a SHOE-BOX
Shoe-Box Appeal by New York Irish Center
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