Congratulations to Portumna and the Galway Wild Geese team who are nominated as Finalists in the 2023 .IE Digital Town Awards.
The .IE Digital Town Awards Gala event will take place at the Hodson Bay Hotel in Athlone on May 24,2024.
Portumna are nominated this year under two categories, Digital Tourism and Newcomer.
This category is for projects that can demonstrate the use of digital technology to attract tourists and deliver a distinctive experience.
Discovering Portumna Sustainably through Ethical tourism – Pilot Website
Proof of concept has already been completed by the team on a website promoting ethical responsible travel in the town.
The website has been wire-framed and with full specifications and domain names registered.
The team are looking for funding support to build out of a feature rich website with functionality designed to significantly change behaviours around sustainable travel by tourists and locals alike.
1st Prize €6,000
Runner Up €4,000
This category is for projects at the early stage of development that are harnessing the benefits of digital to promote a local initiative.
Examples include creating a new website, creating an app, creating social media pages.
This application is in support of StoryWell in early stages development in the mobile app lifecycle.
Inspired by Cuimneamh An Chláir who captures oral histories www.clarememories.ie, Storywell hopes to build on the idea piloting in County Galway.
There is something beautiful in how knowledge and wisdom is held and carried by older generations.
Cuimhneamh an Chláir documents the memories, experiences, customs and traditions that characterise the place we live in and train volunteers known as ’Cuairteóirí’ (visitors), who visit people in their own communities to record their stories.
This is in homage to the old tradition of ‘going on cuaird’; a practice which centres on respectful listening and on conversation with the elders of a community.
Our elders often think their lives are too mundane or their experiences too ordinary to be worth recording. Until they start telling a tale and pure gold drips from their mouths. In fact, their voices are extraordinary.
Even the most mundane stories can be entertaining when told with the right tone and perspective. Not only do recorded stories provide entertainment and laughter, they also serve as a valuable source of information for future generations.
By recording family’s stories, we can preserve important details about our family’s history and traditions, our town’s history and traditions that may otherwise be lost.
But perhaps the most important reason to record our family’s stories is to foster a sense of connection and belonging within families and within your community.
When we take the time to listen to and record the stories of our loved ones, of our neighbours we are showing them that their experiences and perspectives matter.
And when those stories are shared with future generations, they can serve as a reminder of the unique bond and history that our family shares.
Imagine what it would be like to listen to your great great grandparents voices as they were experiencing the Easter Rising or the 1,000,000 people who fled Ireland during the Great Famine in 1846!
The team behind StoryWell are based in Portumna and are ambitious.
They realise that meaningful impact can only be achieved at scale, using digital technology which will be designed to make the recording of future oral histories and stories intuitive, entertaining and rewarding.
StoryWell will give the gift of stories to our future generations in an interactive way and wants to help families to capture their best memories and to enjoy listening to their loved one’s voices forever.
Our experienced team who include a Digital Project Manager, Linda Quinn (Consultant) of Cuimneamh An Chláir and experienced developers are ready to develop a prototype of Storywell, including proof of concept [MVP], a visual representation of the future app StoryWell.
1st Prize €6,000
Runner Up €4,000
The Awards recognise and reward projects with a digital element that have been created by town groups and local communities.
They promote awareness, knowledge, use and understanding of digital in Ireland by its citizens, businesses and communities.
They also highlight the benefits and possibilities of digital and celebrate the digital achievements of local towns, big and small.
Digital offers the opportunity to create new ways of doing things, promote innovation and breathe new life into local communities, making them more attractive places to live and work as well as contributing to a more sustainable future.
They are also a chance to recognise and show appreciation to the volunteers across the country who devote their spare time working tirelessly to enhance their local area, towns and villages.
We have seen some great examples of towns that are using digital and online resources to help renew and reinvigorate their local town.
The .IE Digital Town Awards 2023 are now closed for entries, the finalists have now been announced and can be found here.
The gala awards will be held on 24 May 2024 in the Hodson Bay Hotel, Athlone.
Tune in here to watch the finals LIVE.