Hi everyone
I have attached an article in the Lucan Gazette by my 15 year old niece, Dorothy Landers (yes, I’m a little biased here) titled ‘Irish and its importance’. I thought it was such a great perspective on the importance of the Irish language “Because it’s what makes Ireland Irish”, and since it was penned by a 15 year old, is very reassuring that our beautiful language will survive long into the future. I hope you will read it when you have time.
Please visit our Resume Posts section to view resumes/CV’s from our new arrivals or those considering moving to the U.S. –https://www.failte32.org/job-openings/resume-posts/
Below is extract from resume of Christopher Kwong, a budding entrepreneur with an impressive track record at this early stage of his career.
Awards & Achievements:
          Duke of Edinburgh Gold award – This is a highly recognized award which shows organization, determination and my natural ability to be proactive.

          Rowing – Winners Irish Championships MJ18 VIII 2010 (unbeaten in Ireland)
Placed 7th out of 256 In the highly prestigious “Schools’ Head of the River Race” London 2010

        Best in ICT A Level – 2011

C. This in from Chris Nash of Fusion Fighters ” We have been working since March on what direction we would like to go with this new fusion of percussive styles and integration of technology. We came up with the idea of creating a show that was in the theme of a computer game. To begin this we thought we would
make a video as close to the vision we had, before working with someone in projection to then see how we could turn it into a live performance.  I also learned all the programs to create the special effects and edit the video myself (which took a good few months).

Well anyway last Monday I launched the video to YouTube and we got a whopping 22k views in one week. The response has been really amazing and it has made us even more keen to get moving with more videos and a projection show. I’m looking forward to seeing what you think about our: ‘Cutting-edge visual performance presented in the style of a motion sensor computer game’.
Failte 32 has finally come to the end of it’s mission “to provide social and professional support to the newest members of our Irish American community and connect them to networks in order to become established in New York”
Its mission expanded over the past 3 years from supporting Summer J-1 visa holders to supporting longer-term IWT J-1 and other visa holders in their search for employment in the U.S., and on visa matters through our immigration attorney Caro Kinsella. We also took on the role of part lobbyist for immigration reform through our proposed IRE Irish Immigration Bill, and established the Shamrock Fund SM. Our website service included access to frequent newsletters and updates (pertinent job info, announcements, requests for jobs from visa holders etc. which we sent to everyone in the Irish and Irish American community), a section on news/events appropriate for job networking, a visa support section, a job search and support section through RendezVous353 (and more recently our resume post section), and last but not least, a centralized point of access for job seekers to our affiliated organizations and strategic partners. Our service also included face to face meet ups, and email follow up, to give advice, tips, and contacts to job seekers and visa holders.
The plan, when discussed with Niall Burgess, the Consul General at the time, was to proactively keep the initiative going for a year or two, but due to demand, the committee decided to continue into a third year. The great thing about ‘initiatives’ such as Failte 32 is that they have a beginning and an end, which means that unlike more formalized entities which can go on forever and become institutionalized, ‘initiatives’ such as Failte 32 have a specific message to get out to the community, and a specific goal to achieve in a certain period of time, which once achieved, the initiative ends.
We now feel that we have very effectively gotten our message out to the community, have helped a lot of people on both sides of the Atlantic, and see many organizations and Irish American media reaching out further to support J-1 and other visa holders.
Not long after the launch of Failte 32 in 2010 (which garnered a lot of publicity at the time particularly under its original ‘Save the Irish’ banner) and its efforts to highlight and resolve the difficulties J-1 visa holders were experiencing finding employment in the U.S., a full time position was established in 2011 through the Irish International Immigration Center (IIICenter) in Boston, funded in part by the Irish Govt., to find internships in various U.S. industries for those on the one year IWT J-1 visa (not affiliated with Failte 32, but we’re proud to have set precedent for the launch of a Govt. funded J-1 support program shortly after our launch). Megan Carroll, who was hired for this position, assisted in successfully placing close to 300 interns from Ireland over a 2 year period – a fine contribution. Failte 32 is also proud, having been asked by the IIICenter on more than one occasion to assist placing some of their very urgent J-1 cases, to have been willing and able to do so with some success. And our own immigration attorney, Caro Kinsella, has certainly over the past 2-3 years contributed in a very meaningful way to the availability and clarification of information on visa options available to immigrants, and has helped many attain legal status here in the U.S. – another fine contribution.
But prior to the metaphorical ashes of Failte 32, another important initiative was launched within the Failte 32 model back in 2011, the Shamrock Fund SM, to provide some financial support to help visa holders network for employment.
Going forward however, the Shamrock Fund SM which was just recently incorporated as a non-profit charity, will no longer provide financial support to visa holders, rather now help those who can’t help themselves, the most needy in our society.
The Shamrock Fund SM  is based on the original Shamrock Fund established back in 1916 to raise money in America for Irish servicemen who had been injured or disabled in World War I. In November 1916, the New York Times reported that Lady Kingston from Co. Roscommon had arrived in the city to set up a fund to help TB sufferers and other Irish soldiers injured or disabled in the trenches. Her appeal was directed at the Irish living in New York “who ought to be glad to do something to help their own people.”
Our re-launch of the original Shamrock Fund back in 2011 has served to assist Failte 32 members, and will serve similar and expanded purposes as the original Shamrock Fund going forward.
As many of you know from our prior newsletters and updates, 100% of donations to the Shamrock Fund SM will be spent on the most needy. All admin. costs, expenses etc. will be paid out of pocket (not out of donations), and nobody associated with the Shamrock Fund SM either formally or informally will be paid a salary or remuneration of any kind out of donations. Are we the first charity to do this? We’re simply following common sense on how charities should operate properly in terms of how donations should be spent. I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying, ‘charity begins at home’. I don’t remember my parents ever paying me or my siblings a salary (and certainly not an astronomical one!), bonus plus expenses when, like many Irish parents, they were instilling a sense of charity in all seven of us, and getting us to practice it. And the Oxford English dictionary defines charity as being ‘voluntary’ in nature.
We will still retain our lobbyist role by lobbying Congress and other Governments for changes in the way many charities and non-profits are run today. Some of these changes will include:
  • A significant reduction in salary levels charities can pay their officers (at most, low five figure salary, preferably zero),
  • The immediate deployment of donations for the benefit of the needy (donations not allowed accumulate on the charities balance sheet/financial statements beyond a reasonable short period of time i.e. there should be a high turnover of donations),
  • Mandatory requirement to source ‘barter’ donations, and that the level of these ‘barter’ donations at least equal donations received in cash (this is a more efficient way of deploying donations i.e. take as much cash receipt out of the donation process as possible).
  • Emphasis on the creation of smaller charities, but more of them, by redirecting Govt. incentives towards the creation of smaller charities. We don’t need more ‘too big to fail’ organizations, particularly ones that are meant to be charitable. Lets protect the last bastion of social responsibility and compassion in this great country, the charitable organization, from the for-profit mindset.
The Shamrock Fund SM will also be using the HaloCard Project platform to very efficiently reach donors (more below). Most of our donations will be received through barter and the HaloCard Project.
Our sincerest thanks to all of you who gave us your kind support, and supported our young new arrivals from Ireland. We’re certainly very impressed with the quality and professionalism of the young people coming over from Ireland to live and work in the U.S., and they certainly present a great opportunity for U.S. employers. This will be our last Failte 32 communication. Who knows, maybe we’ll need your support again for another initiative in the future. We will however keep you up to date on progress of the Shamrock Fund SM from time to time. If you wish to unsubscribe, please let me know by replying to this email.
As we’ve said in past Failte 32 articles, “The great thing about the Irish is that we never sought to conquer another country; rather, we left our country as either emigrants or missionaries, both very noble and honorable pursuits, and have contributed to the great reputation the Irish enjoy worldwide.”
More on HaloCard……

Many of you will have noticed in our newsletters over the past few months our emphasis on the HaloCard Project. We decided that, before we officially ended the Failte 32 initiative, we wanted to give back to our affiliated organizations and help them achieve their goals by giving them a cost effective and efficient way to reach new donors, and possibly re-engage past donors. The HaloCard project provides an excellent platform to do this, and is founded and run by people with excellent business and community reputations. See http://www.halocardproject.com/our-founders.html

Some of you have asked us how the HaloCard works i.e. how do they get the figs into the fig rolls!
How can you, a credit card holder, use your credit card (HaloCard) to give to the non-profits of your choice, including Irish and Irish American non-profits, with no out of pocket costs to you? How is this possible? How does the HaloCard generate donations for non-profits?

Well, in general, here’s how they do it. It’s quite unique.
The HaloCard™ Project is an initiative to revolutionize charitable giving through the development of a credit card platform that allows users to provide donations in an amount equal to 1% of their transactions to the non-profits of their choice.
The 1% that you as a cardholder donate to the non-profits of your choice comes out of the credit card merchant fee, not out of your pocket. It’s as simple as that. 
In particular, the 1% comes out of the portion of the merchant fee that the bank that issues the HaloCard receives. Let me explain further.
The credit card merchant fee (the fee the merchant is charged when you use your credit card, and is on average 3%) is divided among, in this case Visa (on average .75%), the credit card processor (on average .75%) and the bank that issues the credit card (on average 1.5%). Note the bank that issues the credit card gets on average 1.5% of the merchant fee.
Now here’s the key – HaloCard has reached agreements with community banks that issue the HaloCard (remember they get on average 1.5%) which require them to devote 1% of the amount of each transaction you the cardholder make, to the non-profit organizations of your choosing. Therefore, the bank that issues the HaloCard essentially forgoes 1% of the 1.5% it receives from the merchant fee, so that you the HaloCard card holder can donate this 1% to the non-profits of your choice.
So, although a for-profit endeavor, the HaloCard Project clearly has a serious charitable bent. You will be hard pressed to find a major bank providing this type of service. What major bank is going to give up 1% out of the 1.5% it receives from the merchant fee, so that its customers can donate this 1% to the non-profits of their choice? Not many if you ask me.
Community banks on the other hand, being more community focused, are not all about the bottom line, and they are the banks that the HaloCard Project works with. Again, the HaloCard Project working with community banks is the key!
So that’s how they do it, and that’s how you can be a HaloCard philanthropist with no out of pocket costs to you. For more information, and a graphic illustration of the above process, please click on following link:

HaloCard Plastic - Purple HaloCard Plastic - Green
What HaloCard™ cardholders are saying:
“I get this unusual feeling of satisfaction each time I use my HaloCard.  It sounds funny, but I actually think about how much is going into my donation bucket each time I use the card”
Molly Dugan – Social Roadmap, LLC
HaloCard™  Business Cardholder
Kind regards
Failte 32 Committee

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