Free programme to empower and support women in Magherafelt and Cookstown

A free programme of workshops for women in rural areas is starting later this month in the Mid-Ulster area.

Hosted by the Northern Ireland Rural Women’s Network (NIRWN), the bespoke #SELFIE programme begins on Tuesday 22nd September in Magherafelt and Thursday 24th September in Cookstown, with the aim of helping participants feel more confident, find it easier to develop relationships at individual and group level and ultimately voice their own concerns.

The sessions will include a range of workshops on building confidence, exploration of good relations, inspirational guest speakers, feminism and leadership skills. All social distancing guidance and government advice will be facilitated and adhered to for the duration of the nine-week programme.

NIRWN Director Louise Coyle told the Courier: “In this instance SELFIE is an anacronym (self-esteem, leadership, friendship, influence and empowerment), but also came from a statistic that most women will take just over 40 selfie photos before finding one they are happy to post on their social media. This clearly spoke to us of a lack of confidence women feel in their daily lives and the pressure they are under to conform.

“By the end of the nine-week programme participants should feel more confident in their abilities, feel more supported in their role in society and work towards being effective agents of change and civic leaders in their communities.”

This is a project supported by the European Union’s PEACE IV Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) and match-funded by the Department of Rural and Community Development in Ireland and The Executive Office in Northern Ireland.

Places are limited and primarily targeted at rural women from the Mid-Ulster District Council area. Sign up for free at

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