Launched in 1999, the Saoirse ar an Uisce Barge was specially built for people with intellectual disabilities. Its facilities boast a fitted kitchen, a wheelchair-friendly bathroom/shower and it sleeps up to 8 people. While on board, you can enjoy the many activities which the Inland Waterways have to offer—operating lock gates, freshwater angling, appreciating wildlife/waterfowl or simply relaxing on deck.
Promoted and managed by the Services of the Sisters of Charity of Jesus and Mary (Moore Abbey), the Saoirse ar an Uisce Project has recently entered a new phase of development with the help of the Social Economy Programme of FÁS. The initiative will focus on the long-term sustainability of the project and help to create up to ten job placements on the Barge and in the arts and crafts shop at River House (Main Street), Monasterevin, which is run in conjunction with the barge.
The Barge is currently undergoing renovations to make even more comfortable outings and it is hoped to have all work completed before the start of the season at the beginning of May.
2002 was a particularly good year for day trips bookings on the Barge—both internally and by groups from other service providers who felt that the adventurous nature of the trips had a tremendous therapeutic value—both physically and emotionally—for their clients.
This year, booking can be made through the booking office located at the Arts and Crafts shop in Monasterevin (address below). The shop offers a wide assortment of items crafted in the various resource centres within the SCJM network.