EcoHub Galway’s Pop Up Sustainable Living Centre – Convergence 2016

EcoHub Oct 24th -28th

All week @ Galway 2020 Community hub, The Corn Store will host


MONDAY Oct 24th

We believe Galway has a unique opportunity to be at the forefront of world cities, in leading not only in the fields of arts and culture but in the green revolution and transition to a low carbon future.

This year’s festival aims to provide a forum to showcase and discuss latest actions from and for Galway, in leading the way to transitioning to a Sustainable City and promote a vibrant, thriving and sustainable culture and community. Galway’s pop up ECOhub offers a local platform to address and explore the possibilities for how communities come together to share ideas, knowledge, skills, solidarity, and actions, in meeting current day environmental challenges; and offer a platform to cocreate educational and creative opportunities, collective action and community forums to learn from and inspire one another.

Convergence 2016 reflects the recognition of the need for an urgent and deep cultural shift towards more equitable and sustainable ways of life, where creativity, active citizenship and community-led initiatives are at the forefront of developing and testing new and innovative approaches to sustainable living.

We believe now is the time to kick-start a citizen-engaged transition to creating a more equitable and sustainable future. Join us this week at the ECOHub for Convergence 2016. Convergence 2016 is brought about by the collective actions of Artists Elodie Rein, Roisin O Faolaoin, Transition Galway’s Kieran Cunnane and Emmanulea Ferrier, Third Space and Post Carbon Galway coordinator Martina Finn and Grassroots Ireland founder Eoghan Joyce.

As part of Convergence 2016, the ‘ECOHub ’ Galway’s pop up Sustainable Living Centre aims to host a week long series of events, films, workshops, exhibitions, thematic talks, commons reading room, skill share and DIT, ‘Do it Together’ Hackaton and innovation labs… including; the FOOD Sovereignty Proclamation; Cultural Rights Charter; People’s Community Energy Charter; Save Merlin Woods Campaign, Anti Fracking Bill 2016 Campaign; Public Transport Solutions For Galway; Oak Tree Planting – Seed Share and Plant Swop; DIT – Do It Together workshops

Arts, ECOLOGY, and Sustainability Practices;

Artist Sean Taylor leads a discussion together with local artists on the real possibilities of a sustainable arts practice, one which doesn’t compromise the future of the planet.
Sean Taylor is an Artist and Lecturer in the MA Social Practice and the Creative Environment, MASPACE, at Limerick School of Art & Design, Limerick Institute of Technology.

He has worked in Glasgow as a community artist, and was also a Director of the Glasgow Sculpture Studios. He established the experimental performance art group STEM and was a founder member of The Real Art Project. And more recently he collaborates as part of the Art & Science collaboration Softday, with computer scientist Mikael Fernström. The collaboration engages with issues relating to natural cycles in time, climate change and its global effects. As a collaborative team they use their arts practice to explore relations to and understandings of nature, expressed through sonifications and multimedia artworks and performances. Between 2011 and 2013, Softday collaborated with a number of Irish beekeepers, scientist and the monks of Glenstal Abbey, creating Amhrán na mBeach (Song of the Bees) about the life of honey bees and current threats such as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). And mores recently established LUBS – Limerick Urban Beekeeper cooperative. Softday is currently part of a Culture Ireland and Create project tour in Chicago, Re)Public, as part of I am Ireland 2016, this is an exhibition which engages with key issues, reflecting the complexity of 21st century Ireland and the dynamic and diverse arena of collaborative arts.

The MASPACE programme offers students a strong theoretical and critical grounding in the growing area of social practice, equiping students with appropriate research skills on the roles they will play within communities/ situations/spaces. Social Practice is located in the overlap of art, society and politics. It has been described as art activism, critical art, socially engaged art, social practice art, activism, political art, participatory, dialogical or collaborative art. MA SPACE addresses topics such as; Space and Place, Food Politics, Gender Politics, Ecology, Climate Change, environmental politics, Science and Art, Civil Rights, Globalization and Economics, Health, Trans-Global Movement, Labour and Land Politics.


Where’s the Justice? Exploring Environmental Justice in Ireland’
4-5.30pm Mon Oct 24th

Responding Positively to the Challenge of Climate Change and the Environmental & Economic Crises We Face… by Catalyst Collective
Education Facilitators; Bridget Kelly is a community development worker in Galway Traveller Movement. Her current areas of work are accommodation and education. She is the Chairperson of the National Traveller Women’s Forum. Her areas of interest include gender issues and women’s rights.
Jacinta Fay is a community development worker with Galway Traveller Movement and a trainer with the Catalyst Collective. She previously worked with Friends of the Earth Liberia and Friends of the Earth International on indigenous land rights and food sovereignty. Her areas of interest include environmental justice, feminism, reproductive rights, intersectional movement building and popular education as a tool for social change.


Galway City Community Network ‘Transport Linkage Group’

Mon Oct 24th 6.30-7.30pm

The GCCN is a network of community, voluntary and environmental organisations active in Galway City and is the main link through which the local authority connects with the community, voluntary and environmental sectors. Its aim is to co-ordinate and support the representation of the community, voluntary and environmental sectors in Galway City. Galway City Community Network is the Public Participation Network in Galway city and is the mechanism for the selection of representatives of the community, voluntary and environmental sectors on a range of bodies and committees. GCCN is represented on:
The Galway City Local Community Development Committee
Strategic Policy Committees;
Galway Joint Policing Committee;
Galway City & County Childcare Committee;
Galway City Partnership; and the Western Drugs Task Force


GREENING Galway – Monday Oct 24th 7.30-9pm

Environmental Activist Brendan Speedie Smith opens a conversation with members from other activist groups such as Conservation Volunteers Galway (CVG)and Save Merlin Wildflower Meadows Campaign, around the current actions and campaigns to protect, nurture and develop Galway’s natural green spaces.

Speedie will open the evening with an introduction to Terrylands community led transformative cultural heritage project, rewilding, biodiversity, and tree planting project, that has turned Terryland Forest Park into a unique urban forest and outdoor classroom in the heart of Galway city, but which is currently being threatened by a proposal to develop and put a road through it.

The Terryland Forest Park Alliance was established in early 2000 as a “People’s Park” where all sectors of society would work together to develop a unique urban forest in the heart of Galway city. Since that time there has been over 100,000 trees planted in this area, alongside a major biodiversity, rewilding and flower planting project in partnership with Conservation Volunteers Galway. Friends of Merlin Woods Campaign have over the last number of years championed the importance of this Wild and natural amenity for the many residents and visitors to the area.

These woodlands and environmental organisations and activities achieves their objectives of becoming a native tree forestry, a wildlife sanctuary, a location for arts events, a facility for the utilisation of traditional rural skills/crafts such as drystone-walling, coppicing and organic gardening, an outdoor classroom for schools, an outdoor research laboratory for third level colleges, a recreational amenity and the hub for the development of a network of city-wide ecological corridors and pedestrian/cycling greenways. Working together with local community and environmental organisations they are making the vision of a “Green Galway” into a reality, but they need our support.

TUESDAY Oct 25th

4pm Forest Schools Introduction and Discussion with Kerry Kelly and Carol Barrett from Down to Earth 

Knowing inherently the benefits of the great outdoors for children, many organizations throughout the country have put pen to paper to prove this with facts and figures and with new programmes for outdoor activity. Many have even added personal testimony, and have used this to develop programs that are getting kids outside, interacting with nature in greater numbers.

7.30pm – ATLANTIC Film Screening

Award winning Documentary special followed by Q&A with Director Richie O Donnell 

“ATLANTIC aims to give voice to the communities most impacted by oil development and strained fishing resources in these Atlantic provinces. As the global giants push the boundaries of risk and technology to access oil in increasingly difficult places, and international super-trawlers suck unprecedented amounts of fish from the ocean, we look at the impact of these ventures on people and the environment. Using interviews with industry experts, scientists, oil employees, fishermen, politicians and ordinary people, ‘Atlantic’ examines both the cost and the benefit of opening up the Atlantic frontiers.”

Atlantic follows the fortunes of three small fishing communities – in Ireland, Norway and Newfoundland – bringing to the fore three very intimate stories from the global resource debate. It explores how modern day communities must learn from the past, in order to secure a brighter future.


Wednesday October 26th 
11-12pm workshop with Brenda Flannery

; Beo & Be – Mindfulness and Nature Movements – Qi Gong

Brenda’s Qi Gong Classes aims to nourish mental health & wellbeing in the individual and community. It offers a calming space of mindfulness & movement, helping to strengthen & nurture our connection to self and nature’s rhythms.
3pm -4pm Tai Chi with Niall O’ Floinn in the hub

Niall will be describing in depth the way Tai Chi works and the many health benefits that can be achieved through the practice of Tai Chi. He will also give a brief demonstration at the end of his talk.

Niall O Floinn began his study of Tai Chi over 20 years ago and over 17 years ago he opened the Galway Tai Chi Academy .In 2013 Niall lead the first ever Irish team to compete in the Tai Chi World Championships in China. Under the guidance and coaching of Niall, the Irish team returned with 6 medals.

Niall himself is one of the most senior students of the coach of the most national champions of China, Grandmaster Wang Hai Jun. However, there is a lot more to Tai Chi than competition or the martial art aspect. In fact, the majority of people practice Tai Chi for its health benefits alone.
3pm – 5pm Design your own Ceramic Takeaway Mug with local ceramistist  Phillipa Maguire in the hub

Have you ever considered the impact our disposable society has on the planet? Join artists Maria Hutton, Philippa Maguire and Rachel Maguire and you can decorate your own sustainable mug with special ceramic pencils on a bisque fired mug. These will then be taken away, glazed and fired for you…and you get your mug back!

The workshop is open to all but under 16’s must be accompanied. Be prepared to doodle, write or draw ! We hope that when you get your mug back, you will use it and start the changes that we need to make.
6.30pm Deep Ecology and The Spiritual Roots of our Ecological Crisis, An evening talk with Dara Molloy

In Croi Na Gaillimhe, No 1 Mill St. Galway

“Human behaviour is ultimately caused by the way human beings think. At the outer layers of our thought patterns is our mythological framework. This mythological framework is our belief system. Over 50% of the world’s population is now monotheist. Virtually all monotheistic religions are rooted in the Judaic god of Moses. This globalisation of the God of Moses has destroyed spiritual diversity and created one single monocle through which all life is seen.”
Dara Molloy is also known as Dara Ó Maoildhia.
He lives on Inis Mór, Aran Islands. In his earlier years, he was a Roman Catholic priest in the Society of Mary (Marists). In 1985, he settled on Inis Mór as a hermit Celtic monk. In 1995, he left the Catholic church and began practicing as a Celtic priest, monk and druid. His work today includes performing Celtic ceremonies, acting as a pilgrim guide on Inis Mor, and writing. His books include: The Globalisation of God – Celtic Christianity’s Nemesis and soon to be published: The Problem With God. He is also a lead figure in the Aran Island Coops leading the islands towards a carbon zero future, with 5 years into a ten year plan for the Aran islands to achieve self sufficiency.
9pm – 11pm Sustainability Stories – ‘The Loft’ (upstairs from ‘Seven’ on Bridge Street, Galway City)

As part of Convergence Sustainable Living Festival 2016, Transition Galway is running what is called a PechaKucha which will be followed by an interview with writer and activist Mark Boyle.

PechaKucha is an exciting presentation format where guest speakers show 20 images, each for 20 seconds. The images advance automatically and the speakers talk along to the images – this keeps presentations concise, fast-paced and fun.

Sustainability Stories’ and will feature a wide range of local environmental activists, NGOs and groups who are all working to make Galway a more resilient and sustainable place.

The PechaKucha presentations will be followed by an on-stage interview with writer and activist Mark Boyle. Mark is the author of ‘Moneyless Man: A Year of Freeconomic Living’, ‘The Moneyless Manifesto’ and ‘Drinking Molotov Cocktails with Gandhi’. He also writes intermittently for various international newspapers and magazines, such as ‘The Guardian’ and ‘Permaculture Magazine’.

This free event takes place on Wednesday 26th October starting at 9pm and finishing about 11pm in ‘The Loft’ (upstairs from ‘Seven’ on Bridge Street, Galway City). All welcome!

Day time film Screenings (the following films are available for screening during the free time slots, Eco Hub open from 12pm): In Transition 2.0, Trashed, Voices of Transition, More than Honey, The Community Solution.



10.30-11.30pm Ala Theatre Forum

ALa Theatre for Change will give a workshop where the participants will be exploring ideas and values around sustainable living. By using techniques from Forum Theatre and Value Clarification the participants will discuss these issues in a creative way, using their bodies and image more than words


12-2pm Transitioning to Sustainable Community 

Dr Vincent Carragher, Research Fellow in Characterising and Catalysing Sustainable Resource and Energy Transition in Communities, Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering, Trinity College Dublin.

What drives communities on sustainable transitions? Your views are welcome: talks workshop and lunch included..

Vincent Carragher is a Community Facilitation & Sustainable Energy Transition Expert. His work focuses on fostering sustainability, resilience and behaviour change with and for communities. He has significant training and experience in Resource Management, Energy Management and Carbon Management for and with communities, schools and SMEs. Vincent is a specialist in facilitating relevant actors to measure their resource consumption and then to reinterpret it and develop solutions to lower it.



2-3pm – —–ith Bernadette Divilly..
In this workshop participants will be introduced to contemplative dance practice. Key elements in this work include Dharma Art, Somatic Intelligence, and Improvisation.

“We will explore sanctuary allowing the dance to find us. Solos will give expression to our dance and personal movement histories and influences. We will work on spontaneous compositions and maps of space. We will also work on group mind and the concept of village” There is a limited number of people so be sure to book your place early. Please share with people who might be interested, it is very beautiful work. Also, you might be interested in Barbara Dilley’s book, ‘This Very Moment – teaching thinking dancing’

Bernadette Divilly is a Dance Artist, Choreographer, Professional Member of Dance Ireland, Galway Dance Project. Affiliated artist and member of Ómós Áite: Space/Place Research Network, based at the Centre for Irish Studies, NUI Galway, Member of the Third Space -Artist Research Reading Group.
Recipient of Arts Council Project Award for Arts Participation 2014 – 2015, supported by City Arts Office


3-4pm Steiner School

Galway Steiner School principal offers us an introduction about Steiner education, exploring it as a creative, innovative and holistic education, and an education that speaks to the deepest needs of children, one that nurtures the hands, the heart and the spirit. An education in harmony with nature.


4-5pm community drumming Circle with Eamon and Colm


6.30-7.30 Grassroots Ireland Meeting

Grassroots Ireland is a local voluntary people’s movement concerned with social progress, community development, increasing public participation in the democratic process and sharing/spreading factual information so that Irish citizens can make well-informed decisions within the democratic process.
Our aims are as follows:
“Community, Transparency, Democracy.”
– To reform and strengthen the bonds between us as people and communities through compassion for each other and ourselves, while emphasising local politics with high public participation to cater for the very specific needs of each area.
Thursday’s meeting will focus on what we as individuals and as a community can do in the short-term and long-term to help improve the day to day lives of the most vulnerable inhabitants of Galway.

FRIDAY Oct 28th

Climathon 2016
Taking place in the Siobhan McKenna Theatre, Arts Millennium Building 9-7pm
The Climathon Galway 2016 and Convergence 2016 events aims to bring together students, start-ups, entrepreneurs, innovators, technical experts, local businesses, community groups, government and others to ideate and collaborate on major climate change challenges facing Galway city. By working collaboratively in setting ambitious and achievable targets to tackle climate change, biodiversity loss and to promote sustainable development within Galway City and County, this workshop offers real constructive and collaborative opportunities for the coming year. The recently established Post Carbon Galway initiative will take part and acknowledges that transitioning to a renewable energy-based culture and economy needs an all-inclusive partnership approach, aiming to work collaboratively with all parties to enable sustained, citizen-led engagement.
Recognising the need to unite all of local society in planning and creating a just, managed, transition to a secure, flourishing, and authentically sustainable post-carbon Galway, Post Carbon Galway will take part in Galway Convergence 2016 and the Climathon Galway 2016, to discuss next steps to devise and monitor local pathways to a low carbon Galway.
The Climathon Galway 2016 consists of teams (open to participation by those who join the event on the day) focussing on a range of climate-change challenges facing Galway city, including teams who will work to develop innovations and solutions regarding nine thematic groups: (1) Flooding; (2) Low-energy buildings; (3) Sustainable transport; (4) Low carbon footprint diets; (5) Food waste & recycling; (6) Water quality & air pollution; (7) Renewable energy; (8) Biodiversity; and (9) Galway’s carbon footprint.
For more info:
Taking place in the Siobhan McKenna Theatre, Arts Millennium Building 9-7pm

ECOHub Events and Workshops –
Children’s workshop on Web of Life 11-12pm
Maria Johanna Hesche of Green Sod Landtrust

Campaign Sign Making Workshop –

Save the Wildfower Meadows Campaign and Upcoming Events
Event on Sat 29th Oct from 11-1pm Merlin Park Hospital Grounds


An Taisce Green Schools and Gardens

and An Taisce Coastal Clean Ups
Schools are recognized as not only places of formal education, but also as critical settings to foster health, development and overall well-being of pupils and their families.School gardens can be developed ned as cultivated areas around or near schools, maintained (at least partly) and used by pupils and teachers in different manners.Comprehensive models of action are currently being promoted, whereby schools can develop multiple-win situations and positive outcomes in learning performance, food security, nutrition, rural development, local economy and lifestyle practices and habits.
With the growing interest in food, food systems and nutrition, school gardens are now also being recognized as a platform for learning about these topics, and for enabling children (and their families and communities) to tackle the national obesity crisis and build healthy food-related practices, behaviors and attitudes.


2.30-4.30pm- Environmentalist and Nature Activist Joe Queally offers to take us an experiential workshop as he explores the connection between the role of nature, nutrition and the world around us on Health and Wellbeing and mental restlessness…
Discussing the consequences of what happens as we disconnect from nature… And how our reconnection with nature is possible…


Sing for the Planet by Transition Tunes


2-5.30pm Festival Potluck Closing Party... everyone Welcome and bring along a dish to share.. locally grown organic produce available from Community Gardens, Zero waste food campaign and wild foods provided

many thanks to artist and permacultualist Rosin O Faolain and her ally’s in Food Provision – Mother Earth, Devon Community Garden, Dyke Road Community Garden, Health Wise, Dunne’s and SuperValu.


6.00 Critical Mass Cycle from Spanish Arch
Critical Mass is a means of direct action. It celebrates cycling as a sustainable mode of transport and highlights the need for better bicycle infrastructure.

These events are being cohosted by Cultivate, Third Space and Collaborative Ways Forward and is supported by the Local Agenda 21 Environmental Partnership Fund, which is funded by Galway City Council and the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment.

Convergence Galway is brought to you with the support of: Galway 2020, Galway City Community Network, The Ryan Institute and Insight NUI Galway, Galway City Council, Galway County Council, Transition Galway, Post Carbon Galway, Cultivate, Galway Healthy Cities, Galway City Partnership, An Taisce, Green Sod Landtrust, Third Space Galway.

for more info… please visit…


Past events:
Convergence Festival Event 20th October 19:30 Portershed, Eyre Square
Mon. Oct. 24th -Fri. Oct. 28th Galway 2020 Community Hub, Unit 15 The Cornstore, Galway. GALWAY SUSTAINABLE LIVING FESTIVAL