Published 19.02.2024
by Kids’ Own

Kids’ Own Celebrates Launch of Two New Books by Roma and Traveller Children in Cork


We are thrilled to share all about the latest Kids’ Own book launch in Cork featuring two new remarkable book titles . Grow Up Strong by children from the Travelling community and The Real Us crafted by Roma children, took centre stage at Nano Nagle Place amidst a flurry of excitement and support.

The event was a resounding success, drawing enthusiastic participation from our esteemed partners including the Cork Traveller Visibility Group, representatives from the Cork STAR project, and Tusla Education Support Service. Nano Nagle Place, a cultural hub in Cork, provided the perfect setting for this memorable gathering.

Kids’ Own creative director Dr Ciara Gallagher extended warm congratulations to the young people involved, expressing heartfelt wishes that the books would serve as a platform for their voices to resonate far and wide. Ann Burke, representing the Cork Traveller Visibility Group, emphasised the transformative power of collaboration, echoing our belief that together, we can achieve greatness.

A special moment ensued as Ann read a letter from President Michael D Higgins, where he commended the young people and what they had created. He said “The upcoming launches of these insightful books, which delve into the lived experiences of Traveller and Roma children, is a significant step towards fostering understanding, compassion and empathy towards some of the most vulnerable young people in our society.” You can read the full letter below.

Nickie Egan, the chairperson of the Cork STAR project, guided us through the event, introducing the young contributors behind the books. She underscored the inclusive spirit of North Presentation Primary School, where every child is valued as part of the school family.

Former STAR Education workers, Gina Miyagawa and Rachel Coffey, shared poignant insights into the book-making journey, beaming with pride at the accomplishments of the young authors. Gina highlighted the importance of self-belief among the youth, a sentiment close to our hearts at Kids’ Own.

Kids Own Book Launch in Cork


Lord Mayor of Cork, Mayor Kieran McCarthy, officially launched the books, commending the young authors for their outstanding achievement. He  emphasised the value of the young people’s stories that had taken us on a journey which was full of emotions. He noted that their stories were part of the many stories that make up the city over time and asked the young authors to look around and see all the people they had brought together with their voices.

As we reflect on this important occasion, we are reminded of the power of young voices and collaborative endeavours. These books, crafted with love and passion, serve as beacons of inspiration, inviting readers to celebrate the rich diversity within Cork’s vibrant community. At Kids’ Own we are immensely proud to be part of this journey and look forward to many more creative adventures ahead!

We were delighted to have the event covered by Echo Live and The Irish Examiner.

A very special thank you to the funders of this wonderful project, The Toy Show Appeal and Community Funds Ireland and of course to our partners, Cork Traveller Visibility Group, Irish Traveller Movement and the Yellow Flag Programme, Cork STAR project and Tusla Education Support Service.

Read all about this project here