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Changing needs of Irish Travellers
O Nuallain, Sinead; Forde, Mary
In 1988, a group of young Travellers in the West of Ireland put together a booklet about Travellers and selected the name Changes for it - in view of the changing needs and values they were experiencing in more recent times. The notion of compiling this present book came from discussions with the Travellers themselves and with professionals interested in the changing needs of Travellers in Ireland today. Travellers' lives have changed dramatically over the last three decades. Thirty years ago most Travellers lived in tents and horse-drawn barrel-topped wagons. Children attended primary schools only for a number of weeks prior to making their First Holy Communion and Confirmation, and were usually segregated in school for the minimal instructions they received. Most babies were born on the roadside, not always with the assistance of the local doctor or midwife. Many children died in the first year of life and many others died before they reached adulthood. Traveller women were easily recognized by their long hair and shawls, and their children by their scruffy appearance. Tin-smithing, casual farm labour, haberdashery sales from a swag bag, and begging provided the necessities of life for the Travellers - Better known then as Tinkers . Match-making by parents was accepted by young Travellers as the norm. Today, approximately half of the Travellers in the country are housed, and many more are accommodated in properly serviced halting sites. Tents and horse-drawn barrel-topped wagons are no longer seen - they have been replaced by the Hiace van and caravans. The vast majority of Travellers' children attend school. Most Travellers' babies are born in hospital.
Publication Date:
Type: Book
Peer-Reviewed: Unknown
Language(s): English
Institution: Lenus
Publisher(s): Woodlands Centre, Renmore, Galway, Ireland
First Indexed: 2018-02-24 06:50:09 Last Updated: 2018-03-13 06:50:36