Bríd is named Mum of the Year

Brid Meehan new
The Woman’s Way and Beko Mum of the Year winners were announced last Saturday at a special afternoon tea in the Members’ Club at the RDS in Dublin, where Bríd Meehan from Rathkeale was crowned Munster Woman’s Way and Beko Mum of the Year 2016. Brid, who is a teacher, was nominated by her daughter Rachel, who describes her mother as “one of the kindest, sincerest, most dependable women I have ever met”. Bríd has spent years working with young people, and the younger generation are the driving force behind everything she does. She has written and directed pantomimes for the local community in Rathkeale, was a member of Rathkeale Youth Club for 16 years, and has spent years teaching members of the Traveller community, both children and adults.
“I wrote my first panto-mime after granddaughter Emma was born,” said Bríd, after accepting her award. “All that encourages other people to say, ‘Well, that lady isn’t afraid to go up there to do something fun like that, so why shouldn’t we do it as well?’ Life is hard enough. It’s good to be as positive as you can and do fun things like that.”
Bríd hasn’t escaped tragedy in her life. Her only sister took her own life nearly 20 years ago and her husband’s nephew, whom she called her son, also died by suicide. After her sister Peg’s death, Bríd watched over her nephews and continues to do so, despite them being in their thirties. She said, “I always tell them to support each other, never fall out with each other. If you have a disagreement, it’s fine, but always make up…The most important thing is to say how you feel. Don’t hide it.”
As well as the coveted Mum of the Year crown, Bríd walked away with a cookery class for two in the Edward Hayden School of Cookery, a Keelings voucher, a Timex watch and a Beko washing machine.
Hundreds of nominations were submitted by spouses, children, siblings and relatives from all over Ireland. The judging panel of well-known Irish personalities Norah Casey, Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh, Nuala Carey, Edward Hayden and Brent Pope had the daunting task of sifting through all the entries.