Co-operation Ireland

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Co-operation Ireland
Motto The peace building charity
Formation 1979
Legal status Charity
Purpose Campaigning for working in reconciliation in Northern Ireland
Region served
Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland
Leader Peter Sheridan, CEO

Co-operation Ireland is a non-political and non-denominational charity dedicated to peace and reconciliation in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Much of Co-operation Ireland's work focuses on bringing the two main communities in Northern Ireland together through programmes such as the Civic-Link programme.[1]


Co-operation Ireland is a charity, which is run by a voluntary board . The Chairman of Co-operation Ireland is Dr Christopher Moran [2] a position he has held for over a decade [3] having previously been Chairman of the Co-operation Ireland GB Executive [4]. The Board meets on a quarterly basis. The board is supported by five sub-committees – audit, finance and governance, chairman’s, programmes and projects and communications and fundraising. The organisation has charitable status in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.[5]


Co-operation North was founded by Irish businessman Brendan O'Regan in 1979. His objectives then, as now, were to promote reconciliation between the Protestant and Catholic communities in Northern Ireland and to promote dialogue and understanding between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.[6]

Co-operation North quickly became well known for their annual Maracycle between Belfast and Dublin. The first Maracycle was held in July 1984. Since then over 50,000 cyclists have taken part.[7]

Co-operation North was renamed Co-operation Ireland to reflect the All-Island nature of the charity's work.



Co-operation Ireland’s Civic-Link Programme is an education-based project which links schools on a North-South basis and gives the students the opportunity to work collaboratively on projects based around citizenship and civic-responsibility.[8]

Student Journalism Conference

Co-operation Ireland runs an annual conference for journalism students from colleges and universities from Northern Ireland the Republic of Ireland. Each year, the conference examines a theme which is timely and relevant. The last conference was held in February 2010 and the theme examined the role of the media in the transition from Peace to conflict. The former BBC War Correspondent Kate Adie spoke at the conference.[9]

Pride of Place

Pride of Place is an annual competition run by Co-operation Ireland and a consortium of Local Authorities representatives known as the All-Island Local Authority Steering Forum. Through the competition, local people work together to create civic pride in their local community. The competition has a number of categories ranging from small villages to cities.[10]. The most recent awards took place in late November of last year and Chairman Christopher Moran launched the nights events. [11]


CORE is a community based project for the people of Inner East Belfast and Finglas South in Dublin. Those from Belfast come from the predominant Catholic area of Short Strand and from the predominantly Protestant area of Ballymacarrett. An acronym for Community Outreach Reconciliation and Engagement, the project brings people from these communities together and encourages them to work with and learn from each other. The George Best Community Cup is part of the CORE project.

Irish Peace Centres

The Irish Peace Centres is a project developed by four peace centres in Ireland, Glencree Centre for Peace and Reconciliation, the Corrymeela Community, The Donegal Centre at An Teach Ban and Co-operation Ireland.

Fund raising[edit]

Co-operation Ireland came to prominence through their annual Maracycle. Today supporters of Co-operation Ireland raise funds through sporting events such as the New York Marathon and annual cycling challenge events, both in Ireland and overseas. The Maracycle will run again in 2010. In addition gala dinners are held in London, Dublin and Belfast each year.[12]


External links[edit]