• Obair has been in existence in Newmarket on Fergus for over 20 years.

    Obair has been in existence in Newmarket on Fergus for over 20 years.

    It is a community development organisation that works with people from the cradle to the grave to combat social exclusion as well as to develop social enterprise in the area.

    We support those who are unemployed or elderly and work to facilitate greater community participation in the area.

Obair has been in existence for nearly 30 years and was founded by Dr. Brendan O’ Regan, a forward thinking philanthropist, with the aim to improve quality of life in the area. Based in Newmarket on Fergus, Co. Clare, we support families, older people and those who are experiencing isolation and work to facilitate greater community participation in the area. We operate a Community Crèche, Meals on Wheels Service, Afterschool and Post Primary Programme, O’ Regan Park, Remote Working Hubs, Youth Café and an Environmental Section.

Obair operates from two central buildings in the heart of Newmarket on Fergus; The original Obair Family Centre and The Tradaree Hub which opened in 2020. Obair is an equal and inclusive organisation and we work with people who are furthest from society. We take a holistic approach to working with people of all ages from babies to our older community members.

In October 2015 we expanded our local Meals on Wheels Service to cover the whole South Clare area. Since March 2020 we expanded further to deliver a 2 course hot meal daily to the areas of Ennis, Shannon, Newmarket on Fergus, Quin, Doora, Clarecastle, Ballyea, Dangan, Tulla, Kilkishen, Kilmurry, Sixmilebridge, Bunratty, Cratloe and Lisdoonvarna

Our Mission Statement

To create a united vibrant community working together in harmony for the benefit of all.

Company Objectives

To create an environment in which Enterprise, Environment, Employment, Arts, Heritage, Service and Community Development combine to enhance the community as a whole.

To assist in establishing viable enterprise in the parish of Newmarket-on-Fergus and surrounding areas which will generate sustainable employment

To support those who may not have an opportunity to access employment – in particular the long-term unemployed and young people

To develop a spirit of enterprise in our community and to foster a greater sense of place by encouraging and assisting the protection and enhancement of the environment

To promote educational and training activities for the further development of our community

To facilitate greater community participation in the development of our area.

Background History:

Obair Newmarket-on-Fergus Ltd was established in 1993 with the original aim to address the high levels of unemployment being experienced at that time. A group in the community came together and were committed to encouraging people to take greater responsibility for development in the area. The formation of Obair was greatly assisted by Dr. Brendan O’ Regan who came to reside in Newmarket-on-Fergus at that time. Dr. O’Regan facilitated the various groups of individuals to establish one development organisation for the area, known as Obair, Newmarket-on-Fergus Ltd. The group was fortunate to have a number of highly skilled and highly motivated community activists involved who directed new projects and secured resources for the group.

The Original Obair Committee


Members of Dr. O' Regans Family at the opening of O' Regan Park in Oct 2013

Members of Dr. O’ Regans Family at the opening of O’ Regan Park in Oct 2013

In July 1995 Obair applied for technical assistance under the Operational Programme for Local Urban and Rural Development 1994-1999. Their plan was developed by a sub-group of the main Obair board and a committee was formed, this was to be the Community Development Committee. During the period 1996-1999, there was a lot of work carried out in the community and with different community groups, such as the Parent & Toddler, Kilnasoolagh Park Residents, Brehan Youth Group and the After School Project just to name a few.  It was the Parent & Toddler Group that identified the need for a quality childcare service in the village. In response to this need in 1997 the Family Centre Committee was set up to develop the childcare facility. In the initial stage extensive research in the community showed a strong need for childcare facilities, training and community welfare information.


Original Office on Main St and current Obair Family CentreIn autumn 1999, Obair received support to develop and formulate a Childcare Strategy for the area with the following needs identified; the development of a Family Centre to provide full day care, a base for a welfare and health information centre, a community training facility, the Local Development Social Inclusion Programme as well as provision of environmental Services.
The millennium year in Newmarket-on-Fergus brought with it an unprecedented development in the village. A site was acquired beside the Library from Clare County Council. The construction phase of the Obair Family Centre commenced during the year thanks to the enormous fund raising efforts of the local community and a substantial grant received from the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform.

Community & Voluntary Groups:

We welcome all of the following community groups who have availed of our centre or facilities:

  • Acorn Women’s Group
  • Meals on Wheels
  • Beginners Computer Course
  • Brothers of Charity
  • Buzz Stop Youth Café
  • Newmarket on Fergus Community Hall
  • Carrigoran House, Nursing Home
  • O’Regan Park Committee
  • Child Play Therapy
  • Over 55’s Computer Tablet Course
  • Clare Local Development Company
  • Pakie Ryan Memorial Run Committee
  • Clare Youth Service
  • Parent and Toddler Group
  • Community Development through Sewing
  • Pink Angel Ball, Cancer Support Fundraiser
  • Community Games
  • Public Health Nurse
  • Scoil na Maighdine Mhuire
  • Darkness Into Light, Pieta House
  • Newmarket on Fergus Scouts
  • Newmarket on Fergus Tidy Towns
  • Slainte an Chlair, Clare Cancer Support
  • Going Strong Active Retirement Group
  • Social Inclusion Committee
  • Irish Traditional Music Institute
  • St Vincent De Paul
  • Jobseekers Assistance
  • SVP Christmas Appeal
  • LCETB Motor Technology Course
  • TUS Training
  • Low Cost Counseling Service
  • Village Carnival Festival

Co-operation and Complements:

Obair continues to work closely with all agencies in the area during the past year. This close co-operation will continue into the future as the work of the Obair programme continues. We are grateful for the support provided by the many agencies that we worked with during the past year and we look forward to continuing to work together to support and develop the community of Newmarket-on-Fergus

  • Age Action Ireland
  • Alone
  • Caring for Carers
  • Clare County Childcare Committee
  • Clare County Council
  • Clare Local Development Company
  • Clare Youth Service
  • Community Childcare Subvention (CCS) Programme
  • Community Services Programme, Pobal
  • Community Substance Misuse Team
  • Department of Children and Youth Affairs
  • Department of Social Protection
  • Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) Scheme
  • Early Years Capital
  • Focus Ireland
  • Garda Diversion Programme
  • Health Services Executive, West
  • Ignite Mid West
  • Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board
  • Mid Western Regional Drugs Task Force
  • National Childcare Investment Programme, Pobal
  • Pobal ¾ School Meals (Local Projects) Scheme
  • Rethink Ireland
  • Training and Employment Childcare (TEC) Programmes
  • Tomar Philanthropic Trust
  • Tusla, Child & Family Agency
  • Youth Work Ireland

We are also hugely grateful to our large number of volunteers across all of our community groups and services. We would like to express our gratitude to you all for your consistent help in implementing our programmes and look forward to continued support and success.

This project is supported by the Department of Rural and Community Development and Pobal through the Community Services Programme

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