Oh people of Ireland, you are too good.
Just when you think the world has lost all feeling, a lovely initiative has risen up.
Irish people are hosting free welcome dinners across the country for immigrants in Ireland in a bid to break down language and cultural barriers.
People arrive in Ireland every day but may struggle with finding their place in our society, quite often not having a chance to meet and talk to many others who live here. By coming together and sharing a meal, natives and new migrants can connect and enjoy getting to know people in their communities.
Welcome Dinner TED Talk
Originating in Sweden, non-governmental organisation United Invitations kicked off the welcome dinners and was founded by a young Swedish woman, Ebba Åkerman, who is passionate about helping new arrivals in a country feel at home.
The idea spread quickly throughout Europe and is now gathering more hosts each week in Ireland.
Things are kept simple for both hosts and guests and signing up as a host includes no obligations, apart from serving food at the agreed time.
At least one of the participants at the meal should be a person who has moved to Ireland from a different country, and they are always welcomed to bring someone along with them.
With hundreds of active members on the organisation’s site and over 40 dinner locations across Ireland, we imagine there will be many a heart-warming moment in local communities this year.
Lovely, just lovely.