Darren Conroy and guest, Senator David Norris at the launch of Darren's book "Let Your Life Speak , Celebrating People of Laois" in the Mountmellick Arts Centre. Photo Kevin Byrne
Well known Mountmellick man, Darren Conroy, is writing his second book about Laois people.
Darren's first sell out book, ‘Let Your Life Speak’ celebrated the most inspiring Laois people, and raised €18,100 for GROW Community Mental Health services in Laois.
Now, Darren has set out to tell the stories of Laois people who have emigrated worldwide.
Using Facebook as a tool to seek out his contacts and stories, Darren has compiled real life stories originating from Portlaoise, Mountmellick, Abbeyleix, Rosenallis, Clonaslee, Emo, Portarlington, Stradbally.
So far, the stories link Laois people to places like USA, UK, Canada, Germany, Australia, South Africa and Nambia.
The stories he has gathered include tales of reunification after 50 years, from poverty to billionaire, sports success, starting families, uprooting families, promoting Irish culture, missionaries from tough starts to starting success.
In his latest appeal to people on Facebook, Darren said he is looking for good storytellers to contact him.
“I am looking for people who can articulate what the experience of emigration was like, what they felt that they lost, what they have gained, what traditions did they carry with them and teach to their children,” he said.
He is particularly looking for more stories dating back to the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s.
“We have a real opportunity to record their stories which could be lost forever,” he added.
All of the profits of the new book will go to a Laois charity again. He has asked the public which organisations they think are in need of funding over the next two years.