High number of queries for Citizens Information and MABS at record breaking National Ploughing Championships

October 2016

The Citizens Information Service (CIS) and the Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS) were on hand to offer independent information and advice to the record number of people who attended the National Ploughing Championships from 20th-22nd September. This year saw a new venue at Screggan, Co Offaly with 283,000 people in attendance at the event over the three days. This made it the most successful National Ploughing Championships in history.

This year staff from the Citizens Information Services in Offaly, Carlow and Westmeath joined colleagues from Offaly MABS as well as colleagues from the Citizens Information Board. The Insolvency Service of Ireland also had a stand in the Citizens First marquee.

The Citizens Information Service dealt with a wide range of queries from visitors to the marquee – focusing in particular on pensions, tax, social welfare and entitlements for people with disabilities. Likewise the Money Advice and Budgeting Service assisted people with concerns over debt issues, including mortgage debt. Information on the new scheme of Aid and Advice for borrowers in mortgage arrears was particularly useful. On the Wednesday the Minister for Social Protection, Mr Leo Varadkar TD, visited the marquee and complimented the work of all.

The NPA Managing Director Anna May McHugh, delighted by the record breaking attendance, announced that the event is set to return to Screggan, Tullamore, Co Offaly on 19th - 21st September, 2017 given the triumph of this year’s event.

Pictured: Susan Ryan, Manager, Offaly CIS welcomes Minister for Social Protection, Leo Varadkar TD to the Citizens Information stand at the National Ploughing Championships.

Pictured: Susan Ryan, Manager, Offaly CIS welcomes Minister for Social Protection, Leo Varadkar TD to the Citizens Information stand at the National Ploughing Championships.

Pictured with Minister Varadkar at the MABS stand are from left Noel O’Meara, CIB, Mary Errity, Money Advice Co-Ordinator, Offaly MABS and  Martina Farrell, Offaly MABS.

Pictured with Minister Varadkar at the MABS stand are from left Noel O’Meara, CIB, Mary Errity, Money Advice Co-Ordinator, Offaly MABS and Martina Farrell, Offaly MABS.

Outside the Citizens First marquee are from left Michelle O’Hara, Manager, Carlow CIS, Susan Ryan, Manager, Offaly CIS, Minister Varadkar, Mary Errity, Money Advice Co-Ordinator, Offaly MABS and Noel O’Meara, CIB.

Outside the Citizens First marquee are from left Michelle O’Hara, Manager, Carlow CIS, Susan Ryan, Manager, Offaly CIS, Minister Varadkar, Mary Errity, Money Advice Co-Ordinator, Offaly MABS and Noel O’Meara, CIB.